West Virginia Attorneys Discuss Nursing Home Abuse Allegations
It’s every family’s worst nightmare – a loved one being cared for by a nursing home becomes a victim of abuse or neglect. Unfortunately, nursing home abuse happens far more often than many people probably realize. That’s why it’s important to be prepared if you suspect something’s wrong.
Residents of West Virginia were recently reminded of just how common nursing home abuse cases can be in our communities. An employee at Golden Harvest Nursing Home in Welch Community Hospital in Welch, W.V. was recently arrested and charged for allegedly abusing and neglecting patients, according to CBS FOX 59 News.
West Virginia State Police are conducting the investigation, which has so far resulted in CNA Adam Wheeler being charged with three counts of Abuse and Neglect of Incapacitated Adults causing bodily injury, one count of Abuse and Neglect of Incapacitated Adults causing serious bodily injury, and four counts of crimes against the elderly, according to the Bluefield Daily Telegraph.
“As of right now, I’m looking at five possible victims but I feel like there may be more,” Senior Trooper Jarod Tupper said in an interview with the Bluefield Daily Telegraph.
Warning signs of nursing home abuse
So how do you know if a loved one is being abused by nursing home staff, residents or visitors? Sometimes, the warning signs are hard to spot, but there are always some red flags.
Common warning signs of nursing home abuse include:
- Unexplained injuries
- Sudden change in mood
- Restrictions placed on visiting loved one
And if you suspect nursing home neglect, here’s what to look for:
- Sudden weight loss
- Bedsores or other skin ulcers
- Dirty clothes or bedding
What you should do if you suspect nursing home abuse
So what should you if you suspect you’re loved one is a victim of nursing home abuse or neglect? Trust your instincts. If you suspect something’s wrong, take action immediately. You know your loved one best.
- Talk to your loved one. Ask them what’s happening.
- Take photographs of signs of abuse and neglect. Such evidence can be critical to your potential legal case.
- Tell a nursing home administrator your concerns. We suggest doing this in person and in writing. That way you’ll have a written record of your concerns.
- Follow up by filing a formal, written complaint with the nursing home.
- Report the abuse or neglect. You can do so with several state agencies in West Virginia, including Adult Protective Services (APS), the state’s Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program or your local law enforcement agency.
- You can also report allegations and file a complaint with the Office of Health Facility Licensure and Certification (OHFLAC).
- Contact a nursing home abuse attorney as soon as possible.
Our law firm can help you every step of the way. We know how the system works in West Virginia and what needs to be done to make things right. Schedule your free consultation today with our law firm.