Nursing home abuse in Georgia results in harmful consequences to the residents dependent on nursing facilities for care, leading to emotional anguish, injury, and even death. One of the most devastating circumstances surrounding this abuse is that residents are often unable to report the abuse themselves because of cognitive decline or the inability to verbalize the abusive events. These acts can include financial, mental, physical, sexual, or verbal abuse.
Reporting nursing home abuse can feel frightening, particularly when concerns arise about a loved one’s safety after making a report. However, there are steps each friend, family member, or observer can take to report nursing home abuse and provide sound documentation. Working with a Georgia nursing home abuse lawyer can ensure supportive but determined legal representation is on your side to protect a loved one from abuse.
Record the Evidence
Documentation is vital in any case involving negligence. Evidence must be documented as precisely as possible in cases of nursing home abuse. Write down the information supporting your claim, such as:
- The name of the staff on duty and the date the abuse occurred.
- If the exact date is unknown, document the date the signs of abuse were noticed.
- Give specifics about where the abuse took place or where it could have occurred.
- Note any changes in behavior or adverse reactions in the individual experiencing abuse.
- Include the name and address of the nursing home where the incidents occurred.
A nursing home is legally accountable for its residents’ welfare and should protect them from abuse. Failure to provide this protection can result in liability for the damages that occurred.
Report the Incidents to the Proper Authorities
Once you have collected evidence, a report can be filed online with the Healthcare Facility Regulation Division of the Georgia Department of Community Health or by calling (800) 878-6442. It can also be beneficial to schedule an appointment with your loved one’s doctor to assess for additional signs of abuse. Find support and advocacy through a local ombudsman program in Georgia.
Signs of Nursing Home Abuse to Document
When documenting nursing home abuse, include evidence of the signs of nursing home abuse that alerted you to the problem. These signs of abuse provide vital information about the type of abuse an individual has experienced:
- Take photos of bruises, bedsores, or wounds. Your loved one’s physician can also examine these injuries.
- If financial abuse is expected, include banking statements or additional documentation displaying unaccountable financial transactions.
- If a physical exam is performed, include a doctor’s note documenting signs of sexual abuse, such as tearing, bruising, or the development of an STD.
- Include videos that portray behavioral changes, emotional outbursts, or adverse responses to staff.
Documenting the visual signs of abuse is powerful in proving your claims. Reactions or side effects to medications can be used as an excuse for bruising or bleeding. Speak with your loved one’s physician about typical side effects and your concerns.
Accountability in Georgia Nursing Home Abuse
The feelings of anger, guilt, and overwhelm can crash like a wave when you realize that someone you love has been abused by trusted nursing home staff members or visitors to a facility. Julie A. Rice provides the unwavering support you need to seek accountability for Georgia nursing home abuse. A free consultation provides the opportunity to begin to take action and advocate for a loved one who has suffered abuse.