What is Considered Nursing Home Negligence?

If there was ever a place and situation where attention and care need to be paid, it is a nursing home. These facilities are specifically meant to offer medically-oriented care as well as supervision, meals, and assistance with everyday activities. Though some people use nursing homes to rehabilitate following surgeries or illnesses, most nursing homes house permanent residents who are there because their physical, mental, and emotional needs require ongoing attention. Meeting these needs is what these facilities promise, and the failure to do so – especially when it results in harm – is nursing home negligence. If someone you love is a victim of this type of failure to provide for their care, you have the right to take action against the facility.

Nursing home residents have both high-level medical needs and basic needs including attention to their hygiene and their nutrition. Depending upon their specific condition they may need help with getting in and out of bed, or they may simply need somebody to listen to them and pay attention to them. While nursing home abuse is actual direct action that causes harm, nursing home negligence is represented by inaction: residents are ignored and left alone, and this too can result in real physical and mental damage.

Nursing home negligence can be either physical or emotional. Physical negligence is exemplified by failing to provide medications on schedule, failing to help with feeding or making sure that a patient is well hydrated. It may be neglecting a patient’s hygiene or bathroom needs, leaving them in soiled clothing and bedding, or failing to be there to assist them with getting in or out of bed or walking, thus risking falls.

Emotional negligence is exemplified by patients who have left to sit alone with no stimulation, or who are kept from interacting with other residents or with their family and friends who visit.

Where nursing home abuse is evident because of physical signs such as bruises, burns, or broken bones, physical nursing home negligence is suspected when patients suffer malnutrition, dehydration, bedsores, and uncleanliness. Emotional negligence is harder to detect, but signs include withdrawal, anxiety, and lack of interest in life or in self-care.

If you suspect that someone you love is a victim of nursing home negligence, it is important that you take immediate action to make them safe. For assistance, contact our experienced attorneys today.