Reasons That Bedsores Can Constitute Neglect Or Abuse

Posted on: 29 April 2019

When you visit your parent at his or her nursing home, the last thing that you want to discover is that your parent is suffering from bedsores. This skin condition occurs when a patient remains in the same position in bed for a long period of time, and while it might not necessarily seem serious to some people, it's often a sign of either neglect of abuse. Documenting the bedsores — and likely finding an alternate living arrangement — for your parent will be your top priorities. You may also want to speak to a law firm that handles nursing home abuse cases. Here are some reasons that bedsores can be an example of neglect or abuse.

They're Preventable

Seeing bedsores is a concern because this issue is largely preventable. Conscientious nursing home staff members make a point of moving their patients' positions regularly — often multiple times a day — with the goal of preventing bedsores. If your parent is suffering from this condition, it's likely because no one has bothered moving him or her. You'll likely feel incensed when you realize the preventable nature of this issue, and you may also wonder what other indicators of neglect or abuse may be present in your parent's situation.

They're Treatable

Theoretically, a patient could sustain a bedsore even while being moved regularly. For example, a patient with sensitive skin might need to be moved more than other patients, and the nursing home staff may not realize this at first. However, any caring staff would quickly treat a patient's bedsore with lotion and a dressing, while also watching it closely for signs of infection. If you notice a bedsore on your parent, it's not only a sign that he or she isn't being moved, but it's also a sign that the nursing home isn't taking care to look for bedsores and treat them with care.

You Should've Been Alerted

It's a problem if you're visiting your parent and notice his or her bedsores, rather than having been alerted to this issue over the phone. A conscientious nursing home employee, upon discovering a bedsore on a patient, will likely call his or her next of kin right away to explain the issue and confirm that they're treating it. If you haven't received such a notification, it might be a sign that the nursing home is trying to hide what is often an overt sign of neglect or abuse — and one that can be grounds for legal action.

Contact a nursing home neglect attorney for more help.