How Does Neglect Differ from Abuse?
Finding out whether your parent, relative or friend has been the victim of nursing home neglect is vital for their wellbeing. Sadly, many elderly people are in such a vulnerable state that they cannot attend to their own needs. Unfortunately, they are also in no shape to deal with nursing home staff that is neglecting them.
What Is Nursing Home Neglect?
The New York Justice Center defines neglect as “the failure to provide supervision, or adequate food, clothing, shelter, health care; or access to an educational entitlement.”
Elder neglect is typically a more subtle behavior than abuse. With abuse, you envision an elderly person being shoved, pushed, physically struck or verbally abused or financially exploited. Neglect is an omission rather than a commission.
Nursing Home Neglect Examples
The failure to provide an elderly person with timely medical care is a prime example and one of the most egregious forms of neglect. In some instances, this can even be life threatening. An example would be an elderly person who experiences a stroke and cannot get out of bed. This occurs in the morning but the nursing home staff does not discover the person until dinnertime. Even then, they wait until the next day for a doctor to examine the individual. This would be gross neglect.
Other examples include failing to provide regular care such as the following:
- Bathing services
- Adequate food
- Adequate fluids
- Clothing that protects the person against weather elements
- Supervision by staff and medical professionals
- Safe shelter
- Residents with bedsores
An understaffed nursing home may neglect its residents for the sole reason that staff are stretched too thin to offer proper and regular care.
If your loved one appears to be the victim of nursing home neglect, find out about their legal rights. At Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP, we offer a free initial consultation to discuss nursing home neglect and whether grounds exist for pursuing a lawsuit.