Deciding to place a loved one in a nursing home can be a very difficult decision to make, especially when the elderly person is strongly against the change. Often, giving up one’s independence and privacy does not come easily to seniors, but some families feel as if they have no other choice.
Every day, well-meaning families place their mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, and spouses in nursing homes. Most of the time, families have the highest hopes and expectations for these facilities, but many of them do not realize what goes on behind closed doors.
Unfortunately, thousands of nursing home residents across the United States are victims of abuse and neglect at the hands of nursing home staff and fellow residents. If you research “elder abuse” “nursing home abuse” and “nursing home neglect,” you’ll discover that not only is it common and widespread, it’s grossly underreported.
Defining Elder Abuse
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “Elder Abuse is an intentional act or failure to act that causes or creates a risk of harm to an older adult.” Going further, the CDC says that elder abuse is perpetuated by caregivers or by someone the older person trusts.
The CDC says these are the five frequently recognized types of elder abuse:
- Physical abuse, such as hitting, slapping, pushing, kicking, and burning.
- Sexual abuse, such as unwanted sexual contact, sexual harassment, and unwanted sexual intercourse.
- Emotional or psychological abuse, such as verbal and nonverbal abuse intended to inflict emotional suffering, fear, or distress upon the elderly person.
- Neglect – this refers to not meeting the elderly person’s basic needs. It can include dehydration, malnutrition, poor hygiene, and not providing necessary medical care.
- Financial abuse – stealing the resident’s identity, assets, cash, or personal property. It can also involve unauthorized credit or debit card use.
The CDC says, “Elder abuse is a serious problem in the United States,” and we have to agree. If you would like to see more statistics on elder abuse from the CDC, click here.
When families install hidden cameras in their loved one’s rooms, or when their loved ones complain of abuse, these often lead to nursing home abuse lawsuits – which are essential because they help prevent further abuse from occurring.
If you suspect your loved one is a victim of nursing home abuse or neglect in Marietta, Georgia or the surrounding areas, please contact our firm today for a free case evaluation.