The decision to place a loved one in a long-term care facility is always a difficult one. We want what is best for our aging relatives, but many of us struggle with the ability to provide that care on our own. In these cases, we trust medical professionals to care for our loved ones in a professional manner. The pandemic has added an extra layer of worry, however, leading to catastrophic consequences in some cases.
Nursing Home Deaths Increase During Pandemic
The COVID-19 pandemic, which has been raging around the world for almost a year, has had a major impact in long-term care facilities and nursing homes around the country. More than 90,000 residents of nursing homes have died as a direct result of the pandemic, but the death toll could actually be much higher. Advocates for the elderly claim that many more thousands of residents have died due to the lack of proper care during the pandemic. Nursing home staff, already stretched thin, are struggling to properly care for residents not affected by the coronavirus. Reports of dehydration, malnutrition, bed sores and other ailments have increased exponentially over the past several months.
“Failure to Thrive”
Perhaps the most heartbreaking result of the global pandemic is the loss of communication with the outside world that nursing home residents are enduring. In an effort to curb the transmission of the virus, most nursing homes have closed their doors to visitors, forcing family members to see their loved ones through windows instead. This lack of personal connection has led to many elderly residents passing away from what some doctors are calling a “failure to thrive.” For those residents who are still with us, most feel abandoned by family and friends and are fearful that they will never be able to see them again. This isolation is leading residents to suffer from mental deterioration at an alarming rate.
Difficult for Family Members
For the family members of those residing in nursing homes, the wait to see them is excruciating. There is a constant fear that their elderly family member is being neglected, and with very little options to check on them, sometimes that fear turns out to be reality. All the more difficult is the struggle to communicate over the phone or through FaceTime calls. For residents who suffer from mental deterioration, it can be impossible to communicate through technology, leaving everyone involved feeling even less connected.
What You Can Do
Even during a pandemic, nursing homes and long-term care facilities are required to provide adequate care to all residents. If you are concerned that your loved one is not receiving needed treatment, do not be afraid to sound the alarm. Call the center and demand regular reports. Visit as often as you can, even if you have to view your loved one through a window. If you feel that your loved one’s care is being compromised, demand to speak to the director of the center.
We want to do what is best for our loved ones, but the pandemic has led to many of us questioning our decision to place elderly family in a care center. If you believe your elderly relative has been the victim of nursing home abuse, call Ligori & Ligori today to schedule a free consultation. Our dedicated team will examine your case and help you seek the justice your family deserves.
Posted on behalf of