Warning Signs of Neglect in Virginia Nursing Homes

Families across the state of Virginia trust nursing homes to take care of their loved ones. Unfortunately, government studies have shown that a majority of nursing homes across the country suffer from being understaffed, which means that cases of neglect can and do occur.

If you have a loved one who resides in a nursing home, learning the warning signs of neglect in Virginia nursing homes can help you get your loved one out of a neglectful or abusive situation. For more information, and to determine whether or not you and your family have cause to file a personal injury claim, contact a seasoned nursing home neglect attorney as soon as possible.

Common Signs of Neglect

Neglect in Virginia nursing homes can come in many forms and is essentially defined as the failure of the nursing home staff to meet the needs of their residents. This is known as a deviation from the standard of care, meaning that the nursing home staff fails to meet the standards upheld by the larger medical community. Early warning signs of neglect in Virginia nursing homes can include the following:

  • Dry lips and skin due to dehydration
  • Significant weight loss
  • Unchanged clothing
  • Unsanitary conditions in the room
  • Sudden mood swings
  • Marks on wrists and ankles that indicate unauthorized use of restraints

Victims of neglect may exhibit drastic changes in their behavior patterns as well. For example, they may become increasingly upset or they may respond by withdrawing and becoming depressed. As a general rule, any significant change in a nursing home resident’s behavior or attitude should be cause for concern and may warrant further investigation.

One very important sign of neglect is the development of bedsores. These sores are caused by continuous pressure between bony parts of the body and firm surfaces, such as chairs or beds. As such, they may be an indication that the resident is not being moved in their bed or may not be receiving frequent visits from nursing home staff.

What to Do When Neglect is Found

If a family member discovers signs that a nursing home resident may be the victim of neglect in Virginia nursing homes, there are several steps that they should take to begin remedying the situation. The first step is to notify nursing home staff of the problem so that a record of the complaint can be made and proper medical attention can be given to the victim in cases in which their health is significantly at risk.

The family member also may wish to remove their loved one from the nursing home in order to get them the medical care they may require. Documentation of the injury or neglect should be gathered when possible, including pictures of injuries and formal notes from any medical staff that examines the victim.

Speak with a Lawyer About the Warning Signs of Neglect in Virginia Nursing Homes

Crucially, a victim of neglect or the family member of a victim of neglect in a Virginia nursing home should contact a local attorney to discuss the details of their case. Lawyers with experience in these matters may be able to help families understand the seriousness of their situation.

They also can help victims and family members review their legal options going forward with a neglect claim and may be able to clarify issues such as the statute of limitations for Virginia nursing home neglect cases and the procedures available for the victim to recover compensation.

Virginia Nursing Home Neglect Lawyer