Newton Center, Massachusetts Ma (PressExposure) January 10, 2008 -- The prevalence of abuse and neglect in nursing homes today is an undeniable and growing problem. However, according to Attorney Jim Sokolove, families can help prevent abuse from happening to their loved ones by following a few simple guidelines.
"Although we can't put a stop to all incidents of mistreatment in these facilities, families can reduce the likelihood of abuse and neglect by taking an active role in the patient's care," says Sokolove, founder and principal of the Law Offices of James Sokolove (LOJS) . "Closely monitoring their loved one in the nursing home will keep them aware of any deteriorations in the patient's physical condition or well-being. Additionally, their attentiveness will not be lost on the staff."
The National Citizens' Coalition for Nursing Home Reform (NCCNHR) is a grassroots organization that advocates improved care for residents of nursing homes and other long-term care facilities nationwide. In its publication, A Consumer Guide to Choosing a Nursing Home, The NCCNHR offers basic tips on how families can ensure their elderly loved one is getting quality care in a nursing home:
â¢ Visit the patient frequently and encourage others to do the same. â¢ Make any concerns known immediately to staff. â¢ Attend quarterly care plan conferences. â¢ Follow up on the care plan that has been agreed upon for the resident. â¢ Get to know the facility's staff and help them get to know the resident. â¢ Participate in regular family council meetings . â¢ Make contact with your community's long-term care ombudsman or any local citizen advocacy groups. â¢ Document in detail any problems you observe during visits so that they can be promptly investigated by managers, the ombudsman or state agency. â¢ Report any suspected nursing home abuse and neglect immediately in writing, and follow up with the resident and facility to make sure the abuse or neglect has stopped.
"Congress passed the Nursing Home Reform Act (NHRA) in 1987, which guarantees certain rights to residents of long-term care facilities," Sokolove says. "Any violation of these rights may be considered an act of abuse. Victims should know that help is available, and no one needs to suffer in silence."
Those interested in more information on recognizing, preventing and reporting incidents of abuse or neglect in nursing home facilities can visit the Nursing Home Abuse section of the LOJS website.
About The Law Offices of James Sokolove The Law Offices of James Sokolove (LOJS) is the nation's largest and fastest growing marketer of legal services, providing qualified law firms, with the most cost efficient and highly qualified case leads. For over 30 years, the LOJS has endeavored to reinvent how people obtain legal services, in order to provide everyone, irrespective of ethnicity or income, equal access to our civil justice system and within it, superior quality of representation and service. Working with an affiliate network of over 300 law firm throughout the US, the LOJS generates over 200,000 leads and 12,000 signed cases annually, translating into over one quarter billion in revenue dollars for its affiliates. As the legal profession continues to experience unprecedented and dynamic change, the LOJS business model is a proven success as it strategically matches specific client needs with particular law firm expertise.