What Are the Warning Signs of Understaffing in Nursing Homes?

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Nursing homes are supposed to provide quality care and comfort to elderly residents who need assistance with their daily activities. However, many nursing homes suffer from chronic understaffing, which can lead to abuse and neglect of the residents. If your loved one is currently residing in an understaffed or otherwise negligent nursing home and you believe they are being neglected or abused as a result, please don’t hesitate to contact a seasoned California nursing home abuse lawyer from Cowdrey Jenkins LLP for assistance. Read on to learn about some of the most common signs of understaffing in nursing homes so you know what to look for.

What are some of the most frequent signs of understaffing in nursing homes?

Understaffing in nursing homes can present itself in many ways, but some of the most common signs of understaffing to be aware of are as follows:

  • Difficulty finding staff members when you visit or call the facility
  • Call bells and lights that take a long time to be answered
  • Residents who are left alone for long periods of time or are not supervised
  • Residents who are dirty, malnourished, dehydrated, or have bedsores
  • Residents who have unexplained bruises, cuts, infections, or fractures
  • Residents who are overmedicated or undermedicated
  • Residents who show signs of depression, anxiety, fear, or withdrawal
  • Residents who complain of poor treatment, neglect, or abuse
  • High staff turnover and low staff morale

If you notice any of these warning signs of understaffing in a nursing home, especially if they’ve resulted in injury, you should take action immediately to protect your loved one and hold the facility accountable for its actions.

How should I go about reporting nursing home negligence or abuse in California?

If you suspect that your loved one is a victim of nursing home abuse or neglect, you should take the following steps to get them to safety and to gather evidence of the neglect/abuse:

  • If your loved one is in immediate danger, you should call 911. Law enforcement will arrive at the scene, write up a police report, and, most importantly, transfer your loved one to a hospital so they can receive the care they need.
  • Document evidence of the neglect or abuse. This can include taking pictures or videos, obtaining witness contact information, and reporting the incident(s) of neglect or abuse to nursing home management. You should also keep all medical documentation pertaining to your loved one’s injuries.
  • Report the abuse to the Long-Term Care Ombudsman CRISISline at 1-800-231-4024 or the California Department of Public Health.
  • Retain the services of a seasoned California nursing home abuse lawyer who can effectively fight for the compensation and justice you and your loved one deserve.

Cowdrey Jenkins LLP is a proud legal advocate for all victims of nursing home abuse and negligence, and we stand ready to serve as your voice during this difficult time. Contact us today.