If you suspect your elderly loved one could be the victim of nursing home abuse or neglect, you may be unsure of how to file a nursing home abuse complaint. While a Phoenix nursing home abuse attorney can certainly assist you with this process, you may want to start the process immediately, before you have chosen an attorney.
Before filing a nursing home abuse complaint, it’s important to gather information regarding your loved one’s injuries or ailments. You may be unsure of whether your loved one’s injuries are a normal sign of aging or could indicate nursing home abuse. Unfortunately, far too many people miss the signs and symptoms of nursing home abuse, attributing the signs to deteriorating mental and physical health due to aging.
Behavioral signs are crucial to detecting abuse and neglect and maybe the first indicators of abuse. Signs of physical abuse include bruises, black eyes, welts, failure to administer necessary medications, and overdoses of medication.
Some of the behavioral issues which may indicate physical or emotional abuse include:
- Avoidance of eye contact
- Easily startled
- Sudden apathy
- Withdrawal behaviors
Any of these behaviors may be signs of abuse. In some instances, caretakers might refuse visitors entirely or refuse to allow an elderly person to be alone with visitors.
If you suspect nursing home abuse, it is important to file a complaint quickly and then seek protection for your loved one.
Contact the Arizona Department of Health Services
The Arizona Department of Health Services offers an online system for filing a complaint against a nursing home, which is state-licensed. The form will require you to answer basic questions regarding where the suspected abuse took place, who perpetrated the abuse, who your loved one is, and when you suspect the abuse occurred. They will also require additional information regarding witnesses to the abuse or police involvement. Once the form is completed, it is then sent for prioritizing to the appropriate licensing office.
Your contact information will be required in the event more information is required. However, officials want those who use the system to know it is confidential and secure.
This complaint form is available at www.azdhs.gov, or complaints can be filed via phone at 1-602-364-2536. If you are curious about a nursing home’s latest state inspection results, you can go to www.azdhs.gov/als/ltc/index.htm for this information which includes any citations issued. You can go in person to 150 North 18th Avenue in Phoenix, to the fourth floor where licensing information can be viewed.
Filing a Complaint with Arizona Adult Protective Services
You can also file a complaint regarding neglect or abuse of an elderly individual online with Arizona Adult Protective Services (www.azdes.gov/reportadultabuse) or by calling 1-877-767-2385. If your loved one’s nursing home accepts Medicare or Medicaid, you can access government ratings for the facility at www.medicare.gov.
Contact Our Phoenix Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers Today
If you believe that your loved one has been a victim of nursing home abuse, it is important to file a complaint quickly and then seek legal help. A nursing home abuse attorney can help you protect your loved one from further abuse while holding abusive caregivers and institutions accountable for the harm they’ve caused.
At Miller Weber Kory LLP, our Arizona nursing home abuse lawyers can help you and your loved one through this horrific ordeal. Contact us today at (602) 737-0249 for a free initial consultation and review of your case. We are here when you need us the most – and we will fight for you every step of the way.