Nursing home abuse is a serious problem that often goes unreported to authorities. Family members may not even be aware that their loved ones are being abused or neglected in Pennsylvania nursing homes. Because nursing home abuse is widespread, there are several ways you can report abuse in a nursing home.
Reporting Nursing Home Abuse in Pennsylvania
If you suspect that your loved one is in immediate danger or harm, call 911 to report the abuse. Abuse and neglect are crimes.
For non-emergencies, you can contact the Pennsylvania Department of Aging. The 24-hour elder abuse hotline is 1-800-490-8505. You may also contact the Pennsylvania Department of Health directly by calling 1-800-254-5164 or by filing a complaint online.
Contact an Erie Elder Abuse Lawyer
If you are unsure what you need to do, contact our Erie nursing home abuse lawyer for help. Our law firm can help you take steps to stop the abuse and protect your loved one. We can also assist you in filing a lawsuit against the nursing home and other parties responsible for the abuse to hold them accountable for their negligence, carelessness, and intentional acts.
Filing a nursing home lawsuit can also stop the abuse from happening to another resident.
A lawsuit against the long-term care facility and specific individuals is separate and apart from any criminal charges filed against individuals who committed the abuse. Regardless of who committed the abuse, the facility and everyone involved should be held accountable in criminal court and civil court. A nursing home lawsuit provides compensation for your loved one so that you can ensure he or she receives the medical and personal care necessary to recover from the abuse.
Signs of Nursing Home Neglect and Abuse
It can be difficult to spot the signs of abuse and neglect in a nursing home. The staff and the facility may hide the abuse from family members. Residents are often afraid or unable to speak up to report the abuse.
However, there are signs that you can watch for that could indicate your loved one the victim of abuse or neglect in a nursing home.
Common signs of physical abuse in a nursing home:
- Lacerations, cuts, and bruises
- Welts and red marks
- Bruising around the ankles or wrists
- Concussions and other head injuries
- Broken bones
- Sexually transmitted diseases
Any unexplained physical injuries could be a sign of elder abuse.
Signs that your loved one might be neglected in a long-term care facility include:
- Sudden weight loss
- Poor personal hygiene and care
The above lists are not complete lists of the signs of abuse in a nursing home. Emotional abuse and verbal abuse are also widespread in nursing homes. If your loved one withdraws, is afraid of being left alone, becomes depressed, has sudden mood change, cringes when someone touches them, or has increased cognitive impairments, it could be a sign of elder abuse.
You can also call your loved one’s doctor. If the doctor works for the nursing home, take your family member to another doctor, or arrange for an independent examination. As stated above, if you believe your loved one is in danger, call 911 immediately. Otherwise, you can call our office to discuss the matter with our Erie elder abuse lawyer.
Do You Need Help with a Nursing Home Lawsuit?
Contact The Travis Law Firm by calling (800) 401-2066 to schedule your free legal consultation with an Erie elder abuse attorney.