Each year approximately 1 in 6 adults aged 60 and over experiences some form of abuse in a community home setting . The actual percentage of abused or neglected individuals is likely higher than that, but sadly abuse often goes unreported. Elderly individuals in nursing home environments often suffer from physical or mental limitations that prevent them from speaking out against abuse, and in many cases, even those who are able to report abuse are afraid to do so.
Nursing homes may be understaffed and the staff that is employed is often poorly trained or overworked. Many nursing homes simply do not hire enough staff members to adequately care for all residents. Further, many nursing home staff members receive minimal or inadequate training in providing care for residents.
Because nursing home abuse and neglect is so prevalent, and because victims of abuse may be unable to speak up, it is imperative that resident’s family members and friends recognize signs of nursing home abuse and neglect, and that they understand what is considered elder abuse.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, there are six main categories of nursing home abuse:
- Physical Abuse
- Sexual Abuse
- Emotional Abuse
- Financial Abuse
Those who believe their elderly loved ones have been abused (or are at risk of being abused) should contact an experienced attorney as soon as possible to discuss legal options. Below are answers to frequently asked questions that may help identify signs of nursing home abuse or neglect and the circumstances that lead to abuse and neglect.
What are the symptoms and signs of elder abuse and neglect?
Because the definition of nursing home abuse is broad and because each situation is different, the symptoms and signs of abuse and neglect varies. Typical warning signs include unexplained injuries, bedsores (or pressure ulcers), poor hygiene, malnourishment, unsanitary living conditions (soiled bedding clothing, unclean rooms), fearful behavior, or unexplained anxiety.
Who is responsible for preventing abuse and neglect in nursing home facilities?
Nursing home owners are expected to keep residents safe from all forms of elder abuse.
Why is nursing home abuse and neglect so common?
Unfortunately, nursing home administration often prioritizes profit over resident well-being. In doing so, they put nursing home staff in impossible positions and put residents at a heightened risk of physical and mental harm.
Are there certain factors that typically lead to nursing home abuse and neglect?
Understaffing, inadequate staff member training, lax hiring practices, and failure to follow and enforce safety procedures are factors that contribute to an increased risk of nursing home abuse and neglect.
Why pursue an abuse lawsuit?
Nursing home abuse/neglect lawsuits send a powerful message to nursing home owners: if you fail to provide nursing home residents with adequate care, you will be held accountable.
Our team of attorneys at FBFG has brought numerous cases against nursing homes to hold them accountable for their maltreatment through nursing home abuse class action lawsuits. We hope that your elderly loved one receives top quality care, but if their nursing home falls short and abuse occurs, contact us as soon as possible to learn more about your legal options.
FBFG Class Action Nursing Home Cases in Recent Headlines:
- News 12 The Bronx, Lawsuit claims 2 nursing homes mistreat patients, lack staffing
- Record Online, Goshen nursing home’s troubles reflect larger for-profit trend
- News 12 Westchester, Nursing home faces lawsuit in wake of resident death
- CNY Central, Settlement reached in former James Square facility lawsuit
Click here for more recent articles highlighting FBFG’s efforts in seeking justice for abused or neglected individuals.
__________________________________________________________________________________ See http://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/elder-abuse