Sexual abuse of nursing home residents may not be as common as neglect or other types of physical abuse, but it is nonetheless a serious and real issue facing many men and women currently living in nursing homes.
As tragic as this is, it is made more so by findings from the National Institute of Justice that the older a victim of sexual abuse is, the less likely the perpetrator is to face consequences. This has shown to be particularly true of victims who live in nursing homes.
Sexual abuse of the elderly is a crime that must not go unpunished. If you suspect a loved one is facing this or any other type of mistreatment in his or her nursing home, call Herbert Thornbury, Attorney at Law at 423-443-3973 to schedule a free consultation and learn how our Chattanooga nursing home abuse lawyer can help.
Signs of Sexual Abuse in Nursing Homes
Signs of sexual abuse that you should be aware of include:
- The emergence of a new STD
- Injury to the pelvis
- Unexplained injuries that make sitting uncomfortable
- Bruising around hips, buttocks, or breasts
- Bleeding, pain, or irritation in the area of the genitals or anus
- Bloody, torn, or heavily soiled undergarments
These signs may be accompanied by behavioral changes including:
- Visible discomfort around staff
- A withdrawal from the larger nursing home community
- Increased anger, agitation, or anxiety
- New habits such as nail-biting, rocking in place, or talking to self
- Panic attacks
These things can indicate many forms of mistreatment and should be investigated by an experienced nursing home abuse attorney as soon as possible.
Chattanooga nursing home abuse lawyer Herbert Thornbury is a board-certified civil trial specialist. He is prepared to take your nursing home sexual abuse claim as far as needed to help you and your family get justice.
Who is at Risk?
While anyone living in a nursing home is at risk for mistreatment, the National Institute of Justice reports that the most vulnerable residents are those with dementia or a physical limitation that may prevent them from fighting back or resisting the assault. Instances of neglect, physical abuse, and sexual abuse in nursing homes are also more common at facilities with low staffing levels and tend to occur under administrators who have a shorter tenure and lower education levels.
If you have a loved one living in a nursing home who is among these more vulnerable populations, it is recommended that you make frequent, unannounced visits to check on their wellbeing. Residents with family members who are active in their care tend to receive better treatment in general. Taking time once or twice a week to make a 30-minute visit can have a profound impact on your loved one’s experience in their home and can give you a baseline from which to gauge changes in behavior and appearance that may indicate abuse or neglect.
If you suspect a loved one is being abused in their care facility, call our Chattanooga nursing home abuse lawyer at 423-443-3973 to learn how we can help. Attorney Thornbury serves Chattanooga and surrounding areas of Tennessee along with nearby areas of Georgia and Alabama.