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Report finds nursing home abuse widespread throughout U.S.


Posted on behalf of Michael D'Amico of D'Amico & Pettinicchi, LLC on Aug 22, 2014 in Nursing Home Abuse

Several generations ago when a loved one grew old or became unable to care for him or herself, family would take them in and provide the necessary care. As families have evolved and more individuals are out in the workforce, this practice has changed some. Accordingly, nursing homes play an important role in society. In fact, throughout the country 17,000 nursing homes exist. 1.6 million people live in them.

The facilities that provide the necessary care for many are not cheap. Loved ones of those who reside there expect they will be treated a certain way. They certainly do not expect that a resident will be abused in any way.

Sadly, there are situations where residents are mistreated however. According to a congressional report issued last month, nationwide between the years of 1999 and 2001, 30 percent of nursing homes were cited for abuse. There were a total of 9,000 instances of reported abuse spread across 5,283 facilities. Reports of nursing home abuse have been on the rise since 1996.

Not all of the instances of mistreatment led to residents being harmed. However, in just over 1,600 cases, residents were seriously injured or in immediate jeopardy of death as a result of the abuse. These instances include physical abuse such as staff or residents kicking, choking, slapping or punching. In other situations residents are dehydrated, malnourished, do not receive adequate medical care, have untreated bedsores or are involved in accidents that could have been prevented. They also take into account cases of sexual abuse as well.

The results of the report are probably disturbing to those who have a loved one in such a facility. While it may not happen to the person they love it is important that they realize that if it does, they may have options. Seeking financial compensation from the facility is one of those options.

Source: ABC News, “Elderly Abused at 1 in 3 Nursing Homes: Report", David Ruppe, July 30, 2014