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How Does Abuse Affect Nursing Home Patients With Dementia in Illinois?

Posted on in Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect

Cook County nursing home negligence attorney for patients with dementiaResearch shows that people are living longer than they did in the past. However, many elderly individuals suffer from cognitive impairment, such as dementia, which is a leading cause of disability and dependency among older people globally. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia, and it may contribute to more than 60 percent of all diagnosed cases. Any type of dementia can greatly impair a person’s memory and the ability to care for himself or herself. Relatives may be unable to meet their loved one’s needs, since they often require 24/7 care. That is why many afflicted with the disease must reside in a nursing home or assisted living facility. Sadly, those with diminished mental states may face an increased risk of injuries from nursing home abuse or neglect

Signs of Neglect and Abuse

Unfortunately, nursing home patients who have dementia may be targets of abuse, and perpetrators may think that they can easily be taken advantage of, since no one will believe the accusations they make due to their mental health. A perpetrator may also try to place blame on the patient for their injuries, and claim that a person’s dementia was responsible for any harm they have suffered. Residents with dementia may not be able to fully remember the abuse and tell family members or authority figures about it. 

Patients may also suffer from financial abuse. Staff members may convince a patient to write fraudulent checks, or they may steal cash or valuables from unsuspecting residents. If a person obtains a patient’s personal information, they can open credit cards or take out loans in the patient’s name. Sexual abuse can also occur, and this can lead to sexually transmitted diseases or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in residents of long-term care facilities. 

A few of the noticeable signs and symptoms of abuse or neglect include:

  • Bruises, cuts, or swelling

  • Withdrawing from conversation or interactions with staff members

  • Depression/bouts of crying

  • Agitated behavior

  • Insomnia

  • Not eating

  • Infections due to bedsores 

If you suspect that your loved one is being harmed while under the care of medical professionals, immediately take action to make sure he or she is safe and out of harm’s way. Next, discuss your concerns with a reputable personal injury attorney who can investigate the allegations, since dementia patients are often unable to verify the abuse. If any abuse or neglect has taken place, you or your loved one may be entitled to compensation.

Contact a Chicago Personal Injury Attorney

Entrusting the care and safety of a loved one to a nursing home can be difficult but necessary. A highly skilled Hyde Park nursing home abuse lawyer from The Law Offices of David A. Kadzai, LLC can help you address concerns about the treatment of a patient with dementia. Attorney David Kadzai has over 10 years of experience, and he understands the sensitive nature of elder abuse. He will demonstrate liability for your loved one’s injuries while working to hold the negligent party or parties responsible for the pain and suffering your family has endured. Call us today at 312-229-0050 to schedule your complimentary consultation. 

Sources: 

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=1222&ChapterID=21

https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/dementia

Chicago Bar Association Cook County Bar Association Federal Bar Association Illinois State Bar Association American Bar Association University of Illinois Alumni Alliance
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