Although actual incidents of nursing home abuse are low, the thought of it frightens residents and families all over. While nursing home residents, they still have protection. The Nursing Home Residents’ Bill of Rights states that residents have the right to live in nursing homes free from any type of abuse. By law, nursing homes must work to prevent abuse and the facility must report any suspected abuse so independent investigations can be completed.

Families also play a large role in prevention of abuse or neglect. Loved ones whose family members visit frequently, ask questions and demand quality care, are less likely to suffer from abuse or neglect. Below is intended to help you in preventing abuse and/or neglect when choosing a nursing home for your loved one.

Prevention Through Selection 

Every nursing home is different and they all provide different services for their patients. As in all services, some provide quality care and some provide poor care. Choosing a nursing home carefully for your loved ones can go a long way to ensuring good care.

When looking for a nursing home, ask for referrals from your friends or fellow employees. Check with physicians who see patients in the nursing homes in your area for more information about the residence.

Once you narrow your options down, schedule an appointment with the Administrator and the Director of Nursing for the nursing home. When you go to the nursing home, ask some of the following questions:

  • What do other residents look like? Are they clean and dressed appropriately? Are they actively engaged?
  • What is the background and experience of the Director and Administrator of the nursing home? You should be looking for people who are experienced and have stability of employment.
  • What activities are available for the residents? Meet with the Activities Director and ask for an activities calendar.
  • What specialty therapies are available? Does the nursing home have in-house therapists, like physical therapy, speech therapy and occupational therapy? If these specialty services are contracted out, how frequently do the therapists come to the nursing home?
  • What does the food look and taste like? Does it look nutritious and edible?
  • What is the nursing home’s fall prevention policy?
  • How does the nursing staff document turning and repositioning of bedfast residents?
  • Who performs dietary consultations for the nursing home?
  • Who is the Medical Director? How many patients does he/she have at the nursing home?
  • Does the nursing home have a Residents or Family Council?
  • Does the staff interact well with the residents?
  • Is there interaction between the residents?
  • What background check is done on the nursing staff before they are hired?
  • If a family member is not satisfied with the care being given by the nursing staff, what can they do?
  • Is there a waiting list? What is the private pay rate?

Once you’ve narrowed down your choices, talk with the staff and get to know them personally a little more. This will help you decide who is more personable and see who fits your loved one’s needs the best. Following these questions will help you have peace of mind and assure you that you are preventing nursing home abuse and neglect.

If your loved one has fallen victim to nursing home abuse or neglect, they have options. At Balkin Law, we will fight for their rights and get them the compensation they deserve. For more information, contact us here or call us at 888-751-5908.