5 Types of Nursing Home Abuse

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lonely senior woman in a wheelchair

If your loved one has been the victim of nursing home abuse in New York, it’s critical that you help protect their health and well-being, as well as their legal rights. The experienced and compassionate New York nursing home abuse lawyers at Finz & Finz, P.C. will work with you and your family if your loved one has suffered abuse. Our highly skilled and committed New York nursing home abuse attorneys know how to hold negligent nursing homes and nursing home staff members responsible for their abuse, negligence, and misconduct. We will fight for compensation justice for your family. To schedule a free and confidential consultation with Finz & Finz, P.C., call now at 855-TOP-FIRM.

Physical Abuse

Physical abuse is the use of force that may cause bodily injury, pain, or impairment. The injuries that a nursing home resident may sustain as from physical abuse can be serious. Elderly people are typically relatively frail and fragile. A resident can suffer severe injuries from a shove or slap. An older person’s skin is more susceptible to cuts, bruises, and abrasions.

The following are examples of physical abuse that staff members can inflict on nursing home residents:

  • Hitting the resident with their hand or an object
  • Pushing or shoving the resident
  • Slapping, shaking, or pinching the resident
  • Force-feeding the resident
  • Using unnecessary physical or chemical restraints
  • Pulling the resident’s hair
  • Throwing the resident into a bed

Potential signs of physical abuse:

  • Bruises
  • Black eyes
  • Open wounds and cuts
  • Broken bones
  • Sprains and dislocations
  • Bleeding
  • Internal injuries
  • Broken glasses
  • Signs of being subjected to punishment
  • Signs of being restrained
  • Lab findings of a prescription drug overdose
  • Resident reports of being hit, kicked, or abused
  • Sudden changes in behavior
  • Staff refuse to allow visitors to see a resident alone

Emotional Abuse

While emotional abuse is more subtle than physical abuse, it can be just as harmful. Emotional abuse generally occurs when the abuser purposefully causes distress to the resident, leaving them in a state of emotional pain and suffering. Emotional abuse can affect their self-esteem and well-being and even lead to physical ailments.

Types of emotional abuse include:

  • Threatening language
  • Shouting
  • Ridiculing
  • Blaming the resident for things that aren’t their fault
  • Ignoring the resident
  • Subjecting the resident to periods of isolation

Sexual Abuse

Sexual abuse is non-consensual sexual contact of any kind. Sexual contact with any person incapable of giving consent is abuse as well. The elderly are at greater risk for sexual abuse because they tend to have limited mobility and may have diminished mental functioning. These issues allow abusive staff members to take advantage of the residents.

Examples of sexual abuse in nursing homes include:

  • Sexual assault or battery
  • Unwanted touching
  • Rape
  • Coerced nudity
  • Inappropriate sexual comments
  • Sexually explicit photographing
  • Taking sexual photographs

Financial Abuse

Financial abuse generally involves instances in which nursing home residents have had their money unknowingly stolen from their accounts. Families place their trust in nursing home staff members to provide them with trustworthy long-term care. Unfortunately, residents may become close to staff members who exploit their trust and commit financial abuse.

Warning signs of financial abuse include:

  • Sudden changes in the resident’s will
  • Sudden changes in the resident’s bank accounts
  • Frequent checks being written
  • Information on financial documents changes
  • Bounced checks
  • Personal belongings disappear
  • Names have been added to financial accounts

General Neglect

Neglect is the act of failing to provide care to nursing home residents. While abuse is the deliberate act performed against someone with the intent to cause harm, neglect is typically the result of indifference and carelessness on the part of the nursing home or staff.

Nursing home neglect can occur in a variety of ways, including:

  • Leaving residents unattended for a long period
  • Failing to provide necessities such as food and water
  • Improperly administering or forgetting medications
  • Not making sure the residents’ rooms are properly cleaned
  • Failing to help with baths and hygiene
  • Ignoring complaints whether they are against staff or other residents
  • Not reporting injuries or illness to doctors or family members in a timely manner
  • Failing to ensure the safety of residents

How can a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Help?

Experiencing abuse at the hands of nursing home staff can devastating for both the elderly victim and their family. If you believe your loved one has been the victim of nursing home abuse, you need a lawyer on your side to fight for their rights. A nursing home abuse lawyer can help with all the important tasks, including obtaining all medical records and helping determine whether you have a viable claim under New York laws. If your abuse claim is successful, you will be entitled to compensation for the abuse that was inflicted on your loved one.

In addition to helping your loved one recover compensation, a seasoned lawyer can help deter other nursing homes from engaging in this abhorrent behavior. An attorney can report the nursing home abuse to the authorities. A lawyer can also take the nursing home to court if the settlement offered does not provide you with the full and fair compensation you and your family deserve. If necessary, expert medical witnesses can be called upon to testify in court and explain that the nursing home’s negligence caused your loved one’s injuries.

Contact a New York Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer

At Finz & Finz, P.C., our experienced nursing home abuse attorneys have represented the rights of injured residents against nursing homes throughout New York. Proving fault in nursing home abuse cases can be challenging. With these complex cases, it’s critical that you discuss the situation with the skilled and experienced New York nursing home abuse attorneys at Finz & Finz, P.C. Call 855-TOP-FIRM to set up a free and confidential consultation with our compassionate legal team.