elder abuse

Many states have taken proactive steps to address nursing home neglect and abuse, and Virginia is no exception. Virginia is particularly unique in its seriousness in addressing nursing home abuse and neglect, as the state has extensively expanded federal nursing home laws to combat this issue. The purpose of these Virginia nursing home laws and regulations is to ensure that nursing home abuse and neglect are not ongoing problems.

The Rights of Virginia Nursing Home Residents

If you have a loved one who has moved into a nursing home in Virginia, it is important to understand their rights. According to federal and state laws, these rights fall into the following categories:

  • Quality of Care: A nursing home must provide care and services that allow individuals to maintain or attain the highest practicable mental, physical, and psychosocial well-being. 
  • Quality of Life: A nursing home needs to offer care for residents in an environment that promotes the enhancement or maintenance of each resident’s quality of life. 

Put more simply, a nursing home in Virginia needs to make sure that residents are free from physical and mental abuse and that they do not neglect their needs. If a nursing home does not live up to its duties, and a resident at the home sustains injuries or other damages because of its failure, residents and their loved ones can take legal action. 

What To Do If You Suspect Elder Abuse?

It is common for elderly individuals who are being abused in nursing homes to not report the abuse. They are often afraid of retaliation or are incapable of taking action due to conditions such as Alzheimer’s. This highlights the importance of loved ones being prepared to take action if they suspect mistreatment of a family member. Some steps they may want to take include the following:

Contact the Local Authorities

If you believe that your loved one is at risk of imminent danger or has been a victim of a crime, you need to call the authorities immediately. Be prepared to tell the police what has happened, your family member’s name, and the person you suspect of wrongdoing. 

Contact the Proper Officials

You should also report the suspected neglect or abuse to the local Department of Social Services or Virginia Adult Protective Services. You can also contact the Virginia Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program. The program advocates for older individuals obtaining long-term care services, whether that care is in an assisted living facility or a nursing home. It also provides older individuals and their loved ones with information and assistance to help resolve conflicts and care problems. 

Reach Out To an Experienced Elder Abuse Attorney

If you are concerned about a loved one in a nursing home in Virginia, or if you are unsure about the legal options available to your family when you suspect elder abuse, it is important to reach out to an experienced Virginia elder abuse attorney for guidance. These legal professionals can assist you in reporting any alleged mistreatment to the appropriate authorities and can take immediate steps to start protecting your loved one.

Contact Hollingsworth Law for Further Information About Elder Abuse in Nursing Homes 

At Hollingsworth Law in Virginia, our skilled legal team is dedicated to offering comprehensive legal services customized to the distinct needs of our senior community. Elder Law is a unique field that focuses on the legal concerns and challenges encountered by older individuals, and our firm is proud to provide experienced guidance and support in this vital area.

To learn more about elder abuse in Virginia or to discuss a potential case, contact Hollingsworth Law today.