Mar 31, 2023 - Nursing Home Neglect by Cross & Smith
When a person nears the end of their life, they should be treated with dignity and respect. Unfortunately, for some elderly residents of nursing homes, their golden years are a time of abuse. When this occurs, the abused person and their family are justifiably outraged, and the assistance of an experienced nursing home abuse attorney can help bring justice to the perpetrators.
Before we take a look at the numbers for the prevalence of nursing home abuse, it is important to understand exactly what defines it.
Alabama Code §38-9-7 states that “(i)t shall be unlawful for any person to abuse, neglect, exploit, or emotionally abuse any protected person. For purposes of this section, residence in a nursing home… shall be prima facie evidence that a person is a protected person.”
Abuse can take many forms, and some of the most common are:
Nursing home abuse can be inflicted by a number of different persons. Some of the most common are employees of the nursing home, such as nurses or other caregivers. However, abuse can also come from other residents, nursing home affiliates, and even family members of the abused. The nursing home has a duty to protect its residents from abuse, no matter who the perpetrator is. And when they don’t, they should be held accountable. An attorney from Cross & Smith, LLC, can provide the compassionate care and legal support a family needs during such a time.
According to the National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA), the following are risk factors for perpetrators of elder abuse:
The report further states that the offender often has the following characteristics:
While any resident of a nursing home is a potential candidate for abuse, there are some factors that seem to increase the odds of abuse occurring. First, according to the National Center for Victims of Crime (NCVC), women are more likely to be victims of nursing home abuse. Also, according to the National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA), 50% of elderly persons with cognitive impairments experience some type of abuse. This may be because they are less likely to identify the abuse for what it is, or they may fear losing their caretaker if they ask for help. The same report from the NCEA also states that the following are risk factors for becoming a victim of elder abuse:
According to the NursingHomeAbuseGuide.org, the following statistics apply to nursing home abuse:
Additional statistics from nursinghomeabuse.org further states that in the year 2020, over 15,000 complaints were filed for abuse and neglect. It also states that according to a 2018 National Center for Victims of Crime (NCVC) report, the complaints were broken down as:
These numbers are staggering and highlight the reality that many of our most vulnerable citizens are subjected to abuse in the place where they should be best protected. Even more disturbing is the fact that many believe many cases of nursing home abuse are not reported. Victims could be threatened or fear repercussions for speaking out, or the perpetrator could hide the evidence of the abuse.
If your loved one has been abused while a resident in a nursing home, contact the lawyers at Cross & Smith, LLC. We understand how upsetting this abuse is and will fight for your loved one.
In order to prevent the abuse of a loved one in a nursing home, the first step you should take is to familiarize yourself with what constitutes abuse and how it commonly occurs. Then, make sure you look carefully at any facility you are considering for your loved one. Ask around and see what kind of reputation they have. Once your loved one is placed in the nursing home, visit them often and at different times. Get to know your loved one’s primary caregivers, and make sure your loved one knows they are able to come to you with any issue. Stay vigilant when you visit with them, and be sure to notice any changes in their behavior, mood, or appearance.
If you have concerns regarding the care your loved one has received at a nursing home, contact our firm to speak with an experienced attorney. We may be reached by calling 877-791-0618 or via our contact page.
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Posted By: JM S