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Help prevent Fort Lauderdale nursing home neglect and abuse this holiday season

As we gather together for the holidays, many of us will make at least one trip to a local nursing home to visit a loved one. In other cases, a holiday gathering will make evident the looming need to select a nursing home to care for an aging parent or relative.

In either case, our nursing home neglect lawyers in Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach urge you to speak up about concerns you may have regarding the conditions of an area nursing home. And to do your homework when selecting a home in which to place a loved one. It is incumbent upon each one of us to police the system. Area homes get more visits this time of year than during the rest of the year combined. You can be assured that if what you are seeing does not pass muster during the holidays, there is likely cause for legitimate concern.

Florida has more than 650 nursing homes where more than 82,000 residents reside, making it one of the nation’s top states for number of elderly residents in nursing home care. Most homes are run as part of large corporations and are for-profit companies billing the government, private insurance companies and relatives more than $40,000 a year for care.

Bedsores, unsanitary patients or conditions, and malnutrition and dehydration are among the most common signs of nursing home neglect.

Other signs of nursing home neglect, according to the Elder Abuse Foundation, include:

-Unexplained bruises, cuts or fractures.

-Frozen joints.

-Unexplained infections, bloody clothing or STDs.

-Behavioral changes.

-Staff reluctance to permit visits, delays in visits, or supervised visits.

-Overmedicated residents.

-Missing resident possessions.

-Abrupt changes in financial status.

The Florida Agency for Health Care Administration provides a Florida Nursing Home Watch List of nursing homes with inspection issues.

Here you can find Florida’s Nursing Home Guide, which can assist you in choosing a nursing home by region.

The South Florida nursing home neglect and abuse lawyers at Freeman & Mallard are dedicated to helping residents and families in Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach and the Port St. Lucie/Fort Pierce areas. Call today for a free consultation. 1-800-529-2368.

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