How To Recognize Signs Of Neglect In A Nursing Home

December 21, 2010
By Nursing

There are many different types of Neglect that occur in Nursing Homes but how do you recognize the signs and what can you do about the situation? After placing your loved into a Nursing Home you are placing trust into the facility that they will look after your loved one like you would. With love, kindness, gentleness, patience, care and treated with respect

How To Recognize Signs Of Neglect In Your Nursing Home

So how would you as a visitor recognize signs of Neglect In Your Nursing Home that your loved one lives in? As a Resident that has a voice and is able to speak out loud then you will be able to ask them questions about the level of care. Yet if your loved one is not able to answer your questions and understand what you are saying then you need to search for other signs to see if neglect is occurring.

Upon visiting the nursing home, you will notice smells and see things that the facility is not able to hide. Especially as you walk into the front door of the facility and down the corridor to your loved ones room. The smell of neglect is not one that can easily be hidden or masked. Urine and faeces left on a resident, or in a resident room will be revealed with smell, and then will be noticeable on your loved ones skin. If the resident is left too long in their own incontinence then the skin will blister, and become red.

9 Signs Of Neglect In A Nursing Home

  1. The smell. The stale smell of urine is so very strong, and lingers for a long period of time
  2. Faeces – if the person is left to sit in their own mess then you will notice immediately with the smell, and then the person skin will reveal the signs of neglect
  3. The condition of the facility. Is it clean? What about the carpets/flooring – does it look like it has been vacuumed or mopped? What about the conditions of the bathrooms?
  4. Is your loved one sitting in clean clothes or clothes that they have worn for a few days? What about the loved ones sheets on the bed? Do they look clean or are they stained?
  5. How do the Staff speak to you and the residents? What about speaking to each other? If you notice that the staff speak in a manner that is not respectful towards each other then how do they speak to the residents? What about speaking towards you? Do they speak in a way that makes you feel looked down upon? One sign of neglect is noticeable within body language
  6. What about the mood of your loved one? Do you notice a difference and you are wondering why – is there signs of bruises that can not be explained?
  7. If your loved one can not answer questions due to their condition is there another resident who is able to speak on their behalf? Or a staff member that you can trust to answer questions honestly?
  8. Quantity of sheets/towels/face washers and bathroom accessories. Is there enough towels for each resident and what about soap, shampoo/conditioner, shaving equipment, toilet paper etc……a lack of personal hygiene products is also another sign of neglect
  9. A lack of good quality food. Is your loved one losing weight and you were not made aware of them not eating? What about the quality of food? Would you be able to sit down and eat the food? Does it even look like food that is tasty?

There are many more Signs of Neglect In A Nursing Home – it is a matter of opening up your eyes, asking questions and taking notice of what is going on around your loved one. If you do notice signs of neglect then it is best to address the situation asap to the manager of the facility or a Carer/ Registered Nurse. If you feel that the Nursing Home is still neglecting your family member/friend then you are entitled to take the matter further to the Aged Care Complaints Resolution Scheme A scheme that is set up so that all complaints and issues that cannot be resolved within the facility can be addressed.

Nursing Issues – Nursing With Love.

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