Note: This was featured as part of our Wednesday segment on Charleston’s 105.5 The Bridge with Box in the Morning. You can catch us every Wednesday morning at 8:50 am ET for the latest law tips and legal news. You can listen to the segment below:
Last year, a study came out which found that South Carolina has the worst elder-abuse protections of any state in the country. This means that when it comes to state regulations as well as state funding for the monitoring and regulation of nursing homes and assisted living facilities, South Carolina is not doing enough to protect our elderly. Those living in nursing homes and assisted living are quite vulnerable, and because state protections for this group are not strong enough, we need to be vigilant on behalf of our loved ones.
There are certain signs and symptoms that point to potential abuse by caregivers. Skin tears and similar injuries may also point to potential abuse. Additionally, there may be psychological symptoms. If you visit a loved one and they have become more withdrawn or reserved, it could be a sign that there is a problem. The main sign, however, is bruising. While the elderly bruise easily, excessive bruising may be a symptom of neglect.
Excessive bruising may be a sign that your loved one is experiencing more falls than usual. Anytime an elderly person under the care of a nursing home or assisted living facility, the fall should be reported by the home to the Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC). The state will then do an investigation to see if the fall was a result of neglect or abuse by a caregiver.
When you first suspect any abuse or neglect, whether your loved one has been falling more frequently or showing more bruises, report it to the nursing home or assisted living facility’s administration. The facility should then take the appropriate steps that will lead to an investigation by DHEC. However, DHEC and the state can be overwhelmed when it comes to investigating these claims and reports, especially in a state like South Carolina, where protections for the elderly are insufficient and underfunded.
If claims are not reported or investigations are not completed in a timely manner, that’s when a lawyer ma step in. Here at John Price Law Firm, we believe in compassionate representation and the importance of protecting our elder generations, and therefore take nursing home negligence claims very seriously.
If you suspect a loved one is being abused or neglected at the hands of a caregiver, the lawyers here at John Price can help you take the appropriate next steps. Contact us online or at (843) 552-6011.