Report Suspected Nursing Home Abuse Immediately To The Proper Authorities


May 28, 2017

Georgia's Department of Community Health (DCH) is a state agency whose mission involves protecting elders. The agency is equipped to investigate allegations of elder abuse. The agency's investigations could lead to criminal charges if warranted under the circumstances. DCH has a hotline which a concerned citizen or a mandated reporter can call to commence an inquiry. The DCH will investigate acts involving exploitation, neglect, and abuse of an elder regardless of whether the elder resides in his or her home, in a nursing home, or some other short or long term disability facility. The DCH stands ready to protect this vulnerable population because elders so frequently cannot protect themselves due to declining physical and mental health.

Most nursing home's provide a pleasant, safe and quality environment for elders.  However, some staff at nursing homes may abuse the trust that people place in them.  Elder abuse is rarely blatant, but it can be. Many acts of financial exploitation occur when a person becomes an elder's confidant or caretaker. For example, a crooked person with ulterior motives can become acquainted with the elder's financial affairs and divert money for personal gain. Financial exploitation may start off as an offer of the supposed caretaker to assist with bill-paying. Gradually, the elder relinquishes control over his or her finances, and before long, the person supposedly caring for the elder has embezzled the elder's money. Most people think that only family members or caretakers from the community embezzle from an elders. However, financial exploitation can happen in nursing homes and long-term health care facilities as well. While the overwhelming majority of healthcare workers are only concerned with the health and well-being of their patients, some have gained the trust of an older adult and convinced them to make changes to their will or grant a power of attorney by exercising undue influence over them.

Abuse can rear its head in other ways besides financial exploitation. Elders can suffer physical, mental, emotional, and sexual abuse at the hands of their caretakers. A person can inflict mental and emotional abuse on an elderly person by being mean and aggressive or withholding prescription medication. Caregivers can withhold food and drink as well.

Symptoms of elder abuse can easily be concealed and explained. An elder's physical and mental decline can be blamed on old age and the natural aging process. Bruising can be written off as falling down or having thin skin, making the elder susceptible to injury. Symptoms of dehydration and hunger because of intentional deprivation may appear as the guest becoming senile and refusing food. However, what might really be happening is that a person charged with the elder's care is intentionally neglecting him/her.

An elder will show signs that he or she is suffering from abuse. For example, injuries that cannot be explained by a medical diagnosis are a sign of physical abuse. Moreover, changes in mood can also indicate that abuse is taking place. An elder may reveal the damage from mental and emotional abuse by acting out, withdrawing, being fearful, or suffering from anxiety and depression. Additionally, a critical sign of exploitation of an elder is when a caretaker refuses to allow relatives and close friends to visit the elder alone. A person exploiting the elder may exert control over who sees the elder and in what circumstances.

As Atlanta nursing home abuse lawyers, we understand the devastating effects abuse can have on an elderly person. If you believe that your loved on is a victim of nursing home abuse, contact our attorneys at Montlick & Associates to learn about your legal rights as well as what steps are necessary to protect those rights.

Put Our Law Firm's Over 33 Years Of Legal Experience To Work For Your Case!

If you believe your loved one is suffering from nursing home abuse, call Montlick & Associates, Attorneys at Law for your free consultation today. Montlick & Associates has been representing those who suffer serious injuries throughout all of Georgia and in the Southeast for over thirty-three years, including but not limited to Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, Rome, Roswell, Savannah, Smyrna, Valdosta, Warner Robins and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state.

No matter where you are located our attorneys are just a phone call away, and we will even come to you. Call us 24 hours day/7 days a week for your Free Consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333). You can also visit us online at www.montlick.com and use our Free Case Evaluation Form or 24-hour live chat.

Sources: https://aging.georgia.gov/abuse-neglect-and-exploitation-risk-adults-georgia

Montlick & Associates, Attorneys at Law
17 Executive Park Dr NE
Atlanta, GA 30329
Telephone: 1 (800) LAW-NEED
Telephone: 1 (404) 529-6333
Open: 24 hours, 7 Days a Week

Category: Personal Injury

Please Note:
Many of our blog articles discuss the law. All information provided about the law is very general in nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Every situation is different, and should be analyzed by a lawyer who can provide individualized advice based on the facts involved in your unique situation, and a consideration of all of the nuances of the statutes and case law that apply at the time.