The mistreatment of a vulnerable age group continues in nursing homes across the state. The issue is so troubling the governor created a special investigative unit to delve deeper into the claims lobbed at facilities.
Aging citizens become reliant on the care of others as their physical needs increase and their mental state decreases. They enter nursing homes believing they will receive a high standard of care. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Discover some of the safety nets the government has in place to help save those who need it.
What do the numbers say?
As the Santa Fe New Mexican reports, the number of nursing home complaints declined two years ago. While this may appear positive, it correlates with the lockout of visitors during 2020. This made it impossible for family members to witness signs of abuse and file complaints.
What happens after an abuse complaint?
In the wake of dwindling in-person family visits, Adult Protective Services stepped up visits to nursing homes and long-term care facilities. If the agency finds evidence of neglect, it escalates the case to representatives from the Department of Health and the ombudsman. Once the panel finds cause for concern, they pass it up the chain for fines or prosecution. The state does not shy away from prosecuting facilities that turn a blind eye to the mistreatment of aging patients in their care.
Even though the state is taking action to stop nursing home abuse and neglect, it does not necessarily have the resources to undertake it alone. Any family who suspects their loved one is a victim of mistreatment should contact an attorney to assist in advocating for financial compensation from the at-fault facility.