Previous posts here have discussed some of the potential types of abuse and neglect that a resident in a long-term care facility or nursing home might be subject to in Connecticut. Previous posts have also touched on the rights that residents in such facilities have as far as the state is concerned. Here, we will discuss one way in which nursing home residents and their families can help to reduce the chances of neglect and abuse.
The Connecticut Long-Term Care Ombudsman’s Program is a state agency that attempts to ensure that people in nursing homes and other facilities are aware of their rights and that facilities are not taking advantage of them. One suggestion made by this entity is that residents and their families make use of care plans, which are written programs that contain information on the resident’s concerns and rights, and can be utilized by professionals at a facility to keep the resident’s best interests in mind.
The LTCOP suggests that meetings about a care plan be held when the resident’s family can be there, if the resident desires such, and that the family members help by relating to the facility staff the ways they have come to realize are the most effective in communicating with their loved one, and reminding the resident to ask about treatment options and to be involved in his or her own care. After all, family members most likely know the resident best, and should be involved in helping make the process smooth.
The program also recommends that such care plans be reviewed and changed periodically, especially when problems arise. It should be remembered that the purpose behind such plans is to prevent potential neglect and abuse. Unfortunately, even with such precautions, nursing home abuse does happen, and when it does, elderly residents and their families may need to consider getting more information to discuss potential compensation options.