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North Carolina Nursing Home Abuse And Medical Restraints: Could Your Loved One Be Drugged?

Many are familiar with inappropriate physical restraint use in nursing homes, and many are familiar with the issue of medication problems in nursing homes. However, fewer people are aware of nursing home abuse that takes the form of medical restraints.

This week in North Carolina, the Britthaven nursing home in Kinston, NC, came under fire after one of its patients died under suspicious circumstances. A coroner’s autopsy revealed that the elderly nursing home resident had a prescription pain killer in their system – and nine other residents in the home were also found to be on powerful drugs that were not given to them by their doctors.

The use of inappropriate medical restraints is all too common in understaffed nursing home and adult care facility environments. When nursing home residents who need large amounts of care and attention, especially those suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s, staffers may look for ways to control these patients by drugging them. By putting their residents into vegetative-like states, they are able to keep patients from leaving their beds and rooms. For the residents themselves, their quality of life goes down significantly. What could be days filled with conversation, activity, and joy are turned into days of drugged sleep and muted sensations.

How do you know if your loved one is being medically restrained? Look for sudden and extreme changes in behavior – such as if your loved one becomes unresponsive over a matter of weeks or months. Talk to a doctor and review your loved one’s medication. If you believe that you loved one could be the victim of nursing home abuse and medical restraints, talk to a North Carolina nursing home neglect lawyer today.