The Warning Signs of Patient Neglect

Reynolds and Reynolds Law Firm
Medical recordsPatient negligence in the United States is a concerning issue that can have severe consequences for individuals seeking medical care. There are specific medical malpractice laws in place in order to limit such consequences. Patient neglect is an incredibly heinous and cruel crime. Often, victims are dependent on their assailants, leaving them completely helpless. Sadly, that means the task of discovering these heinous crimes often falls to their loved ones. 

Common examples include misdiagnosis, medication errors, surgical mistakes, and failure to obtain informed consent. Victims of patient negligence may experience prolonged suffering, worsened medical conditions, or even wrongful death. It’s crucial for individuals to understand their rights and seek legal guidance if they suspect they have been subjected to patient negligence. Continue reading on to become aware of the warning signs, so you can protect yourself and loved ones from experiencing such violence.

Signs of Patient Neglect

Physical abuse

The number one sign to look out for is any injury that is not immediately reported. Un-reported injuries are incredibly suspicious and frequently point to patient neglect. Be on the lookout for burns or bruises that appear to be the same shape. This often points to the victim being repeatedly beaten with the same object.

Emotional Abuse

Emotional abuse may not be quite as blatant as physical abuse, but you can spot it if you know what to look for. If your loved one becomes more passive or withdrawn, they might be fearful of their caretakers. If you hear or find out from your relative that they are physically isolated, notify the facility right away. Patients are never supposed to be isolated from other patients for extended periods of time. When you are at a care facility, be on the lookout for how caretakers behave towards other patients. If they are threatening or insulting other patients, you can assume they treat your relative the same way.

Patient Neglect

Remember, patient abuse is not the only thing you need to watch out for. Neglect is just as severe. One of the most obvious signs is weight loss or gain. If your loved one experiences unexplained changes to their weight, you need to reach out for an explanation immediately. Poor hygiene is also something to keep an eye on. Dental or otherwise, poor hygiene leads to make other serious health problems. Pressure sores are another tell-tale sign of patient neglect. Pressure sores are avoidable and curable, so they are usually a sign of neglect.

Theft of Medication

Abusive or drug-seeking caretakers will frequently steal medications from those in their care. When you are at the care facility, keep an eye out for impaired caretakers. This is a clear and conspicuous sign that they are stealing medication. Some of the most commonly stolen drugs are pain patches. Abusers will often attempt to steal them directly off their bodies, leaving torn or damaged parts of the patch still stuck on.

Seeking compensation for damages incurred due to medical malpractice requires navigating complex legal processes, making it essential to consult with experienced attorneys specializing in medical negligence cases.

If you suspect patient negligence, contact the professionals at Reynolds and Reynolds as your dedicated legal team. Know the steps to take before filing a claim! Reynolds & Reynolds in Frisco, Texas can help you through the process of filing a medical negligence claim. Contact us for a free consultation here or call (972) 684-5011 to speak with a local attorney today. Also, don’t forget to follow us on Facebook for more information.