While most of us like to think about the holiday season as a time of joy and getting together with family members and friends, this holiday season is already looking quite different due to the risks of COVID-19 infection. For many nursing home residents, COVID-19 infections can prove fatal, and residents of nursing homes and assisted-living facilities may be at greater risk of getting sick in an outbreak at one of these facilities. As such, many seniors in San Bernardino County nursing homes likely will not have the same guests this year as in years prior.
In years without a global health pandemic, the holiday season is often one of the best times for family and friends to look for signs of nursing home abuse and neglect while visiting elderly parents and loved ones. Without regular visits during the holidays, seniors could suffer the effects of nursing home abuse or neglect without having any loved ones nearby to help stop the abuse and to help get care. This holiday season, it is essential to recognize that elder abuse and neglect will not simply stop because there is a global health pandemic. It is important to understand the signs of abuse and to check on elderly relatives who could be suffering from serious injuries in San Bernardino nursing homes and assisted-living facilities.
What Should You Know About Elder Abuse in Nursing Homes?
According to the National Center on Elder Abuse, the following are key statistics concerning nursing home abuse and neglect:
- Elder abuse is extremely prevalent, with approximately 10% of all seniors being victimized by some type of elder abuse (and that number is likely much higher due to underreporting);
- Physical and verbal mistreatment are among the most common types of elder abuse reported;
- Some studies suggest that one out of every 13 older adults has been subjected to elder abuse in the last year alone;
- Dementia is a risk factor for elder abuse, with approximately half of all dementia patients experiencing some form of elder abuse; and
- Women tend to suffer elder abuse in nursing homes and assisted-living facilities at higher rates than men.
What are Common Signs of Abuse and Neglect in Nursing Homes and Assisted-Living Facilities?
When you are checking on your elderly loved one, what signs and symptoms of elder abuse should you look for or inquire about? The National Center on Elder Abuse identifies some of the following signs of nursing home abuse and neglect:
- Physical injuries, including bruises, cuts, burns, welts, or broken bones;
- General pain and soreness;
- Pre-existing health conditions becoming exacerbated;
- Loss of interest in regular activities;
- Fear or concern surrounding a particular staff member;
- Unexplained infection;
- Report of abuse from the senior.
Even if you cannot physically visit your elderly loved one in a nursing home this holiday season, use phone calls and Zoom to look for any signs or symptoms of nursing home abuse, and take action quickly.
Contact a San Bernardino Nursing Home Abuse Attorney Today
If you are worried about an elderly loved one’s safety in a nearby nursing home in Southern California, you should reach out to an experienced San Bernardino nursing home abuse lawyer for help. Contact the Walton Law Firm today to learn more about how our firm can help your loved one.
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