Michigan ranks second on a list of states with the most instances of nursing home abuse. This fact should serve as a great motivator for everyone in our state to watch out for nursing home abuse and take action as soon as they discover it.
A national study revealed 134 emergency room cases from 2015 to 2016 in which nursing homes required urgent care for neglect, physical abuse or sexual abuse. Seventeen of these incidents happened in Illinois and 13 happened in Michigan.
Michigan needs to take action to stop nursing home abuse now
The year is 2018 and it's hard to believe that nursing home abuse is still such a pandemic problem in the United States. Nevertheless, countless nursing home residents are suffering on a daily basis from all types of neglect and abuse. Family members need to be on high alert for any signs of mistreatment.
Here is how family members can be extra proactive to keep a lookout for abuse:
- Visit frequently: Visit loved ones at nursing homes on a frequent basis, but don't show up at the same time for every visit. When nursing home staff know that a particular patient receives regular and unexpected visits, they are more likely to give the nursing home resident a higher level of service and care.
- Talk to loved ones and investigate their complaints: Ask questions and make sure your loved ones are receiving the level of care they deserve. If a loved one at a nursing home makes any complaint, look into the matter and keep asking questions to staff, demand better quality service and don't give up until your demands are met.
- Watch out for the signs of neglect: Look for the signs of neglect. This could include a loved one being sad or depressed, or quiet and unwilling to talk. Some abuse victims might be afraid to speak up for fear of retaliation. Check for bruises, weight loss, poor hygiene and other signs of neglect.
- Check regularly for bedsores: If a nursing home resident is suffering from a bedsore, it could be a surefire sign of neglect. Bed sores are often preventable and/or treatable if the resident gets appropriate care. However, when left unchecked, a bedsore can become infected and deadly.
Every lawsuit helps bring nursing home neglect to an end
Victims of nursing home neglect can bring a negligent or abusive nursing facility to justice by filing a personal injury action in civil court. If successfully navigated, not only could such a lawsuit bring financial compensation to the victim, but it could bring much-needed attention to the rampant problem of nursing home abuse in Michigan.