Is Poor Food Quality in a Nursing Home Considered Nursing Home Negligence?
Food plays an important role in health, especially as we age. Additionally, many seniors may have dietary restrictions due to health conditions. What do you do, then, when you question the food quality your loved one is receiving in a nursing home?
Nutrient Needs of Seniors
Seniors tend to have unique nutrient needs. They may need foods with more nutrients like calcium, Vitamin D, fiber, and iron. Other nutrients like Magnesium, Omega-3 fatty acids, potassium, and proteins are also beneficial to a senior’s diet. Seniors also tend to require fewer calories than younger people.
Other seniors may have unique dietary needs due to health conditions or medications they are taking.
How Can I Measure Food Quality in a Nursing Home?
Everyone can agree that food quality is important in a nursing home. The foods that seniors consume are important to their overall health. One of the first steps in understanding the types of foods your loved one is consuming is to visit them during meals. Try to take note of the types of meals they receive, including how often the menu changes, and how frequently they receive different foods or ingredients.
If you have questions about their diet, you can also ask their caregiving team. If they have a special diet ordered from a medical provider, it should be listed in their records. You can also usually find out more information about how meals are chosen and who makes them by talking with the nursing home.
Do You Have Concerns About Your Loved One’s Diet?
If you have concerns about the foods, or types of foods, that your loved one is being served, notify their caregiving team. They may be able to make changes to ensure they receive the nutrients they need. When choosing a nursing home for your loved one, it can also be helpful to review the kitchen and menu before.
Worried About Malnutrition?
Serving seniors foods they don’t prefer is a lot different than serving seniors foods that aren’t edible or lack necessary nutrients. If you have concerns that your loved one is malnourished due to the meals served, it’s important to take action immediately. These can be signs of nursing home abuse or neglect.
Signs of Abuse or Neglect in a Nursing Home
Nursing home abuse may include physical abuse. It may also include other behaviors, like failing to provide seniors with adequate meals. Neglect is also a type of nursing home abuse. Not providing seniors with nutritional meals often enough can be considered abuse or neglect in a nursing home. You can report nursing home neglect to the New Jersey Department of Health at 1-800-792-9770. Making this phone call will open an official investigation.
If you find that your loved one has been neglected, it’s important to move them to a safe location as soon as possible. You may decide to move them home for a period of time. You may also decide to move them to a new nursing home. Because there are costs involved with this, it may be beneficial to contact a lawyer.
Contact a Cherry Hill Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer to Discuss Your Case Today
Seniors in nursing homes and other care facilities deserve to be treated with respect and dignity. Additionally, nursing home staff needs to ensure that patients are safe and secure at all times. If your loved one suffered malnutrition or worse due to nursing home negligence or abuse in New Jersey, you need to speak with a qualified attorney. The experienced nursing home neglect attorneys at Sugarman Law represent clients throughout New Jersey, including Cherry Hill, Deptford, Audubon, and Marlton. Call (866) 657-5660 or fill out the online contact form to schedule a free consultation today. We have an office conveniently located at 80 East Main Street, Somerville, NJ 08876, as well as an office in Marlton, NJ.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.