When you place your loved ones in the care of other individuals, you hope the staff will treat them well. Unfortunately, this is not always the case.
If you suspect your elderly family member is a victim of elder abuse from staff in the living facility, you may have options to seek justice. It is a good idea to try to confirm your thoughts before making such accusations. There are a few common identifying characteristics of a poor care facility that may help you to confirm your suspicions.
Chapter 415 of the Florida statutes clearly denotes what courts view as abuse, neglect or exploitation of the elderly, along with the accompanying penalties. Both the staff and the facility owners play a large part in resident care. The disposition and availability of staff can speak volumes about the quality of care the facility provides. On your visits, take note of how the staff interacts with the seniors, as well as how comfortable the seniors seem to be in their care. Look to see if the facility seems to have the proper amount of staff on a regular basis, or if there appears to be a high turnover.
When you ask direct questions about the care of a family member, expect direct answers. Does the staff member seem willing to help address your concerns? If not, try speaking with a supervisor or director of the facility. If you still do not receive an appropriate response, this may be a sign of possible neglect.
Listen to the complaints of your elderly loved one. If he or she seems uncomfortable around a certain staff member or several of them, it may be for a good reason. Watch for other signs, such as bruising, a change in attitude or a drastic decline in health.
These are just some common characteristics of a poor facility. There are other possible characteristics, including your intuition. If you suspect abuse or neglect, it may be helpful to speak with a knowledgeable attorney to weigh your options.