What constitutes nursing home abuse?


Under Georgia law and Federal regulations, nursing homes are required to care for their residents in a reasonably prudent manner in all activities, from feeding, to cleaning, to providing mediations. When a nursing home falls below these standards, and as a result, a resident is injured or passes away, then they are liable for the losses and harms caused.

The terms “nursing home abuse” and “nursing home neglect” are essentially two sides of the same coin. Both have to do with a nursing home’s illegal and improper conduct towards residents.

For the most part, nursing home abuse simply means intentional behavior or conduct by the nursing home for the purposes of causing injury to the resident. So, acts like physically striking a resident, improperly restraining, sexual contact, purposefully depriving the resident of nutrition, and isolating the resident, are all examples of abuse.

This is slightly different than the term “nursing home negligence,” which is behavior, whether intentional or not, that falls below the standard of care. For example, failing to respond to alerts, failing to turn or provide bedsore prevention to a sedentary resident, to properly administer medications.

Nursing home abuse and neglect can sometimes be difficult to spot. However, some warning signs include:

Bedsores: Because bedsores are 100% preventable, observing these injuries on a resident are a definite indicator of abuse or neglect.

Weight Loss and Weight Gain: Sudden weight gain and weight loss is an indication that there has been a change in nutrition or medication.

Dehydration and Malnutrition: Failing to receive the appropriate nutrition and hydration are solid indicators that the nursing home is not providing the appropriate level of care.

Broken Bones and Abrasions: Unexplained or reoccurring physical injuries could be indicators of abuse and neglect.

Behavior Change: Attitude changes, such as showing fear around certain nursing home, staff, are indicators of abuse.

If your loved one has been injured or passed away at a nursing home or assisted living facility, and you are wondering whether it was the result of abuse, then please, feel free to call and speak to one of our experienced Georgia nursing home abuse lawyers today. Our consultations are always free.