The increasing growth of abuse and neglect within care facilities is certainly cause for alarm. Individuals who are residents at these facilities are generally in no position to prevent such negligence, and often suffer tremendously as a result. Without the presence of accountability, nursing home neglect may continue to occur on a daily basis. Fortunately, there are individuals in New Mexico and across the country that are willing and able to provide assistance for those in need.
A long-term care ombudsman’s office in another state enlists the assistance of numerous volunteers for a similar purpose. These individuals are provided with training and knowledge and subsequently sent to nursing homes in a wide variety of areas to address concerns of abuse and neglect within these facilities. These ombudsmen operate under federal law and have reportedly investigated hundreds of thousands of cases across the country.
Without someone to advocate on their behalf, victims of neglect and/or abuse may be forced to suffer a continuous cycle of harm. While many patients have family members who visit frequently, they may be unaware of signs that could indicate such negligence. Many of the patients in these facilities have debilitating conditions, and thus may be unable to express their suffering to family members.
Regardless of how it is discovered, nursing home neglect is a serious issue that can endanger the health of a patient. If such negligence is suspected, the victim or family may choose to seek restitution for damages through the civil justice system. When entering this process, a person in New Mexico will often speak with an experienced attorney for assistance in filing a claim against the party deemed culpable.
Source: The Washington Post, “When there’s a complaint about a nursing home, these volunteers can help“, Susan Jaffe, April 30, 2017