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Preventing Elder Abuse In Georgia

Our law firm is dedicated to protecting the elderly

No human being should ever be a victim of physical, mental, emotional or sexual abuse. Acts of nursing home abuse and neglect are particularly reprehensible because the victims are some of the most vulnerable people in our society. That's why the elder abuse attorney at Johnson Greer Law Group is dedicated to preventing abuse from happening and holding those who allow abuse to take place accountable.

The right to respect, dignity, and proper care

Nursing home residents in Georgia have important rights created to protect their well-being and independence. These rights are supported by the rules set by both state and federal agencies, and there are ombudsman programs and legal helpers to make sure these rules are followed and enforced. This means that every nursing home is expected to meet certain standards of care when it comes to the treatment of residents. Here's a list of key rights that nursing home residents are entitled to in Georgia.

  1. The right to be treated with dignity and respect.
  2. The right to privacy and confidentiality of personal and medical information.
  3. The right to participate in decisions regarding their care and treatment.
  4. The right to receive visitors and communicate freely with family and friends.
  5. The right to a safe and clean living environment.
  6. The right to voice grievances without fear of retaliation.
  7. The right to be free from abuse, neglect, and exploitation.
  8. The right to manage their own finances, if capable.
  9. The right to access medical care and information about their health.
  10. The right to participate in religious or spiritual activities, if desired.

Steps you can take to reduce the risk of elder abuse and neglect

The risk factors that lead to abuse and neglect of the elderly are complex, and friends and relatives of vulnerable people need to do their part to help keep their loved ones safe. Here are some ways you can contribute to preventing elder abuse in nursing homes and everywhere else:

  • Pre-plan the transition to care. Unfortunately, an elderly person's transition to a nursing home or rehabilitation facility is often done in response to a crisis, with little or no time for planning. Those rapid transitions are a breeding ground for abuse and neglect. If you are considering placing a parent or relative in a nursing home, take the time to plan ahead. Visit the facility and look for any risk factors for abuse, such as poor cleanliness or clearly tired or overworked staff.
  • Stay involved with your loved one's care. Maintain open communication with nursing home staff. Be an active participant in treatment planning meetings. Staying involved in your loved one's care will help hold his or her caregivers accountable and create an environment where it is more difficult for abuse or neglect to occur.
  • Make unscheduled visits. Statistically, nursing home residents who have frequent visits are much less likely to be abused or neglected than residents who do not. Making those visits at unscheduled and unpredictable times will keep the nursing home staff on their toes - if they don't know you are coming, they can't take steps to conceal potential red flags.
  • Follow up immediately on any concerns. If you see any warning signs of abuse or neglect, take action. Report your concerns to the nursing home itself, but don't be satisfied with their response. Document your report so that you have a record in case the nursing home later denies that they were aware of the concern. Depending on the circumstances, you may also need to report the abuse to the police or the Office of the State Long-Term Care Ombudsman.
  • Take legal action. If the worst happens and your loved one is abused or neglected in a nursing home, the most important thing you can do is to hold that negligent facility accountable. Contact an experienced elder abuse lawyer specializing in nursing home abuse and neglect cases. Taking strong legal action will send a clear message to the facility and prevent other families from suffering the same ordeal.

If you have any reason to suspect that your loved one has been abused or neglected in a nursing home, take immediate action. Contact Johnson Greer Law Group to schedule your free, confidential consultation. Call (866) 904-6653.

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