5 Steps to Avoid Elder Abuse Before It Happens
Neglect and abuse of the elderly – physical, sexual, emotional, or financial – is nothing short of a tragedy. Elderly people deserve respect, love and the highest standard of care, and those who choose to make that difficult decision to put an older loved one in a nursing home want to believe their family members are safe. Sadly, that isn’t always the case. Following the below steps will make family members key player in avoiding elder abuse before it happens.
While there is legal recourse available for those who suffer from elder abuse, the effects of that abuse can be permanent, and in some cases, deadly. It is always preferable to prevent abuse, rather than dealing with its aftermath. To that end, below are five steps to avoid elder abuse before it happens:
- Visit a variety of different assisted living facilities before deciding where to place your elderly relative. Not all nursing homes offer the same level of care, variety of amenities, or standards of cleanliness. It may help to prepare a checklist ahead of time. Ask yourself what you are looking for in a facility, ask as many questions as necessary once you get there, and always trust your gut.
- Once you’ve narrowed down your list of possibilities, ask for references. Reputable nursing homes will be happy to put you in contact with references who can relate their experiences with the facility. Taking the time to choose carefully is one of the best ways to ensure that you are placing your relative in an attentive and professional environment.
- Know the warning signs of abuse. Since many elderly people are either unable or unwilling to communicate with the family members about the sensitive topic of elder abuse, it is vital to know the signs of abuse and neglect.
- Stay vigilant: Call and visit as often as possible to monitor the situation and check for those aforementioned signs. Does your loved one seem happy, healthy and well taken care of, or is he or she withdrawn, depressed or displaying physical injuries?
- Stay abreast of the elderly person’s finances, medical records and other important documentation. Monitoring these documents can help you catch any changes you might miss with your naked eye. Look for sudden and unexplained injuries, suspicious withdrawals or charges to credit cards, and other indications that abuse might be taking place.
Do you have an elderly loved one who has fallen victim to elder abuse? The law firm of Garcia & Artigliere can help. Call today at (800) 328-2630 or online at www.lawgarcia.com to learn more.