Entrusting a stranger with the care of a loved one is never easy. You may have heard stories about elderly abuse and neglect, which can cause both physical and mental trauma.
If you want your loved one to enjoy safety and comfort in his or her later years, it is critical that you ask questions and investigate the nursing home thoroughly. Medicare offers a checklist to assist with your nursing home research.
If you suspect abuse or neglect at a nursing home in Arizona, contact the Rudolph & Hammond Law Firm. A Scottsdale accident attorney can investigate the situation and explain your legal options. We have more than 30 years of combined experience protecting the rights of the injured. Call 480-951-9700 to schedule a free consultation.
Until then, read on to learn five questions to ask when choosing a nursing home:
- How is the food?
You can learn plenty about how facilities care for their residents in the cafeteria. Diet plays an important role in well-being – especially as we age.
Nutritious food is a good sign, but it must also appetize. People lose sensory ability as they age. Many residents have little interest in food, and these facilities should try to make meals as appealing and palatable as possible.
- What can you hear?
Listening to the sounds of a nursing home can be unsettling, but moaning or the occasional cry for help is actually normal and not an indication of neglect. Old-age dementia is confusing and frequently accountable for these noises.
Instead, you should eavesdrop on the staff. Listen to how they talk to residents and what they discuss among themselves. Residents deserve respect and you should hear it.
- What can you smell?
Unpleasant odors overwhelm most nursing home facilities. Many patients have digestive issues from medications and restrictive diets; others struggle to control their bodily functions.
Such odors are not overly concerning. Keep your nose open for the smell of stale urine, though, as this may indicate cleanliness problems.
- Does the facility have enough staff members?
Short staffing is a major problem in many nursing homes. Ask staff members if they regularly work overtime or double shifts. If the answer is yes, then existing staff are likely overworked and overstressed in difficult conditions. This affects patient care significantly. Medicare offers a compare tool to help you determine the adequacy of a facility’s staff ratio.
- What do the residents do in the afternoon?
Residents should be able to roam the property without restriction in the afternoons. A crowd at the front door is a good sign.
You want to find patients circling nursing stations and keeping busy with various activities. In fact, they should have choices, and there should be high levels of participation. If patients cannot leave their beds, then caregivers should bring activities to them.
If an elderly loved one is receiving substandard care in a nursing home, contact a Scottsdale personal-injury lawyer from the Rudolph & Hammond Law Firm. By acting quickly, you may be able to save others from suffering the same mistreatment. Call 480-951-9700 to schedule a consultation.