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  • Writer's pictureRobert Schuerger II

What Is the Most Common Nursing Home Abuse in Indiana? A Comprehensive Overview

There are many different types of damages a nursing home resident can get, including financial abuse, physical abuse, and more.


Family members who want to pursue compensation to cover the damages caused to their loved one must educate themselves on the most common types of abuse within assisted living facilities to create a strong case.


While nursing home abuse can refer to many different factors, there's one that's more common than the rest. The following article will cover everything people should know about nursing home abuse, its most common type, and what family members can do to seek compensation. Schuerger Shunnarah Trial Attorneys can provide insight on what the statute of limitations for nursing home negligence in Indiana is.


Understanding Nursing Home Abuse

Understanding Nursing Home Abuse


Nursing home abuse, unfortunately, is extremely common in the US. Even though it's unacceptable for nursing home residents to suffer damages while they're in someone else's care, that still doesn't stop some nurses or healthcare workers from doing it.


Thankfully, nursing home residents who have gone through any type of abuse have legal rights and may be entitled to receive compensation for any neglect they suffered during their stay.


It's important to note that nursing home neglect or general abuse can considerably affect a person's physical and mental health, so it's essential for victims to pursue compensation with the help of a nursing home neglect lawyer in Indianapolis.


The professionals at Schuerger Shunnarah can provide nursing home residents and their family members with the legal guidance they need to seek compensation if they ever were abused by nursing home staff members or any other related person.


What's the Most Common Type of Nursing Home Abuse in Indiana?


As mentioned before, elder abuse may involve many different problems that can affect the victim tremendously. However, the most common type of abuse, according to the NCEA, is emotional or psychological abuse.


Emotional abuse refers to any type of pain/distress/anguish infliction done through verbal or nonverbal acts.


These "acts" can involve:

  • Assault

  • Insults

  • Threats

  • Intimidation

  • Isolation

  • Harassment

  • and others

Nursing home residents who go under severe cases of emotional abuse may start feeling anxious or depressed, which could cause many long-term consequences.


Some common examples of emotional abuse include:

  • Yelling at the resident for any reason.

  • Making fun of the resident.

  • Threatening the resident with any physical harm or isolation.

  • Telling the residents false information about their families that could make them feel anxious or depressed.

  • Withholding any access to basic hygiene, food, or hydration.


Other Common Types of Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect


While emotional abuse is the most common case people find in nursing homes, it's not the only one, unfortunately.


Here's an overview of all types of nursing home abuse and neglect that residents can suffer:


Physical Abuse

Physical abuse is right behind emotional one when it comes to the most common types of nursing home neglect/abuse in Indiana.


According to the World Health Organization (in a study made in 2020), more than 9% of staff members in nursing homes admitted to engaging in physical abuse actions.


In this particular case, physical abuse in nursing homes refers to any physical harm that comes intentionally, negligently, or recklessly. A nursing home resident is considered to have experienced physical abuse if:

  • They were being restrained unreasonably with ties or straps.

  • They got punched or kicked.

  • They got shoved or pushed.


It's not hard to identify signs of physical abuse in nursing homes, as they include:


Without proper care, a resident who suffered physical nursing home abuse can experience severe injuries and even death.


Financial Abuse

Financial abuse happens when nursing home staff members steal from a resident or use manipulation tactics to get money from them.


Even though financial abuse doesn't involve any type of physical harm, it can become stressful for the resident, which can lead to a plethora of mental health issues in the future.


Some common examples of financial abuse in nursing homes include:

  • Preventing the resident from accessing their bank account.

  • Stealing any valuables, cash, or credit cards from the resident.

  • Gaining access to the resident's financial records without their consent.

  • Using a power of attorney illegally to change the resident's will.


Sexual Abuse

Sexual abuse is among the most dangerous types of scenarios that can happen in nursing homes, as it can lead to severe physical and mental issues.


Overall, sexual abuse refers to any scenario where the nursing home staff engaged in any unwanted sexual contact. Moreover, it's essential to note that sexual elder abuse can also lead to physical or emotional abuse.


Common victims of sexual abuse in nursing homes include residents who are unable to give consent or are disabled in any way.


Another important factor to note is that sexual abuse can also involve:

  • Showing sexually explicit images or videos to the resident without their consent.

  • Making inappropriate comments to the resident.


Neglect and Self-Neglect

What is nursing home neglect? In essence, it happens when the nursing home staff isn't able to provide the resident with proper hydration, nutrition, and hygiene.


Common cases of nursing home neglect include:

  • Medication mistakes.

  • Malnutrition.

  • Failure to provide personal hygiene.

  • Failure to report known injuries or illnesses to the resident's doctor or family.

  • Leaving the residents without proper care.

  • Ignoring the resident's complaints.


On the other hand, self-neglect happens when the resident can no longer take care of themselves. If the person shows any signs of self-neglect while they're in the nursing home, the staff members could be held liable.


It's important to note that, sometimes, self-neglect could get triggered by mistreatment, which can give the victim enough rights to get compensated through a lawsuit.


Abandonment

As the name implies, abandonment can happen when a resident is left alone for long periods, increasing their risk of getting injured.


If the elder person can't take care of themselves and gets left alone, the nursing home staff could get sued.


How Can Someone Identify Signs of Nursing Home Neglect or Abuse?


There are a few "red flags" that people can keep an eye out for if they want to identify nursing home abuse damages before it's too late.


Some of these signs include:


Poor Hygiene


It's not hard to notice when a resident isn't keeping up with their personal hygiene or health care. Elderly people, typically, need help to brush their teeth or bathe, and if the nursing home staff isn't able to provide adequate care in that department, then they could be charged with nursing home neglect or abuse.


Mental Health Problems


Residents who are getting abused or neglected while they're in the nursing home often show signs of fear, anxiety, or resentment.


As mentioned before, elder abuse in nursing homes can cause a wide range of psychological problems, which can cause residents to distance themselves from friends or family.


Lack of Mobility


Most of the time, nursing homes have programs and routines to keep most residents physically active. Residents who are left on their beds or wheelchairs for a long time can develop mobility issues, which will become more evident as time passes.


Malnutrition


Malnutrition and dehydration are often some of the most common signs that a resident is suffering from elder abuse. Some signs to look out for include:

  • Irritability

  • Tiredness

  • Hair Loss

  • And more


Unexplained Injuries


It's the job of nursing homes and their staff to keep residents from hurting themselves in any way. If they fail to provide proper care, the resident could suffer from cuts, scrapes, or broken bones.


Moreover, if the resident suffered severe injuries, and the staff didn't report them in time, they could face legal consequences.


Poor Living Conditions


Every nursing home in Indiana must be able to provide appropriate living conditions in its facilities, including clean bedding, clothing, and clean common areas.


If the facilities are dirty and have pests or mold, the resident will have a higher risk of getting sick, which is a sign of nursing home abuse.


What Are Common Causes of Abuse or Neglect in Nursing Homes in Indiana?

What Are Common Causes of Abuse or Neglect in Nursing Homes in Indiana?


There are three main reasons why some residents can suffer from any of these types of nursing home abuse. These include:


Poor Training


Even if they didn't mean to, staff members who didn't get properly trained are more likely to engage in acts considered abuse or neglect.


In other words, poor training can lead to a higher chance of making mistakes with medications, providing improper care to certain residents, and more.


Negligence


Every nursing home is required to have high standards when hiring its staff. If the nursing home hired caretakers who are at a high risk of abusing their residents, they could be both held liable.


In any case, the nursing home should check the applicant's certifications, criminal background, and other important factors in order to avoid hiring negligent or reckless people.


Understaffing


This is one of the most common causes of abuse and neglect in nursing homes. Overall, nursing homes that don't have enough staff are more likely to offer less care and attention to their residents, which increases the chances of physical and emotional harm.


Bottom Line - Getting Help for All Nursing Home Residents - The Right Way


It's heartbreaking to see how common emotional abuse (and all the other types of neglect/harm) is in nursing homes. Thankfully, there's a way to seek compensation if a loved one ever goes through these abuse cases. Schuerger Shunnarah Trail Attorneys can also advise on what the average nursing home abuse settlement in Indiana is.


The legal team at Schuerger Shunnarah is willing to go to war for their clients, ensuring they all get properly compensated for any negligent or reckless actions from the nursing home.


Those interested in discovering how this firm can help nursing home residents seek justice may request a free case review today.

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