What to Do if You Suspect Nursing Home Abuse in Oregon: Bend, Oregon Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Explains

What to Do if You Suspect Nursing Home Abuse in Oregon: Steps to Take to Protect Your Loved One from a Bend, Oregon Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer


Nursing home abuse and neglect takes many forms and can be difficult to detect and prove.  This is particularly true when elder patients are unable to defend themselves, unable to effectively communicate, and have mental illness or other conditions such as dementia or Alzheimer’s.  Some common indications of nursing home abuse and neglect include:


  • Bed sores (neglect);
  • Burns (physical abuse);
  • Credit card debt (financial abuse);
  • Bumps, bruises, lacerations (physical abuse);
  • Withdrawn or defenseless (sexual abuse or psychological abuse);
  • Broken bones (physical abuse);
  • No cash money (financial abuse);
  • Skin rashes or poor hygiene (neglect);
  • Swelling or injuries to clothed areas like the back, stomach, or upper legs (physical abuse);
  • Injuries to the private areas (sexual abuse); and
  • Many other types of abuse.


If any of these signs or present, or other signs that are questionable are present, there are some steps that you should take to protect your loved one.  These include the following:


Step 1: Always Remain Calm and Get a Notepad to Document – Do not get aggressive, loud, or worked up because the nursing home will get defensive and your loved one may be sensitive to extreme emotions such as this.  You should take a notepad and begin to take copious notes of what you learn, who you speak with and when, and what they are telling you on that date.  You will be able to catch how stories change as you continue to “investigate.”


Step 2: If You Believe Your Loved One is in Immediate Danger, Call 911 – If you believe that there is a serious health condition (an infection) or physical abuse that is seriously harming to the point of bodily injury or death, call 911 immediately.  Do not wait for corrections if the life and limb of your loved one is in jeopardy.


Step 3: Confront the Home Staff or Administrator – Seek out information from the nursing home staff member or members assigned to your loved one (usually a nurse) and speak with the house administrator.  Confront them about your observations and seek an explanation, such as “my loved one has a lot of unexplained bruises, why” or “there has been an increase in credit card use but my loved one is bedridden, how did that happen” or “how could a spiral fracture happen in a non-ambulatory individual?”  These questions get a dialogue going were you can assess whether you believe the explanations are reasonable.  For any “events” like a fall or self-harm, the nursing home must produce an incident report.  This incident report must include what happened, when, what staff was involved, and the response.


Step 4: File a Report of Abuse or Neglect with the Appropriate Oregon Department of Human Services Office in Your Area, or File a Complaint with Your Area Agency on Aging Office – When the explanations do not make sense to you, or whenever the injuries to your loved one are so severe, use Oregon’s public service website to locate the appropriate office to file a report of possible abuse or neglect, or to file a complaint against the nursing home.  If you feel uncomfortable in doing so, you may skip to Step 5 which is to contact an Oregon nursing home abuse lawyer who could help you through the process.


Step 5: Speak with an Oregon Nursing Home Lawyer –  If you believe the injuries are so severe and the explanations do not make sense to you, or if the complaints and reports of abuse or neglect that you filed came back substantiated (meaning possible), you may have a claim for Oregon nursing home abuse or neglect and should contact a Central Oregon nursing home lawyer.  The consultation is free and you could get the answers that you and your family deserve.  Call our Oregon medical malpractice lawyer to learn how we can help you.  We handle cases throughout Oregon and Central Oregon, including Deschutes County, Redmond, Sisters, La Pine, Madras, Prineville, The Dalles, Hood River, Clackamas, Corvallis, Albany, Lake Oswego, West Linn, Tigard, Salem, Portland, Hillsboro, Vancouver, Washington, Beaverton, Oregon City, Eugene, Coos Bay, Astoria, Newport, Pendleton, Tillamook,  Milwaukie, Gresham, Hillsboro, Medford, and any other city, including Bend, Oregon where our main law office is located, please call Kuhlman Law, LLC by dialing (541) 385-1999 to learn what your rights to compensation you may have.  You may also contact us using our easy and convenient “contact us” box at the bottom of our website.  If we accept your case, we will conduct a thorough investigation to get you the answers you deserve, all for free.  There is no risk, and you only pay us if we recover compensation for you.

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