Nursing Home Neglect has become a scary epidemic found in many countries. An elderly person needs constant attention and is therefore, entrusted to a nursing home which is supposed to take care of their needs. Residents at these nursing homes are paying for the service and receive a very poor service in return. Their needs are ignored and they are not treated with respect. Some might even die because of negligence. This unfortunately has been growing and it can be very hard to prove this abuse. It is usually covered up by the staff at nursing homes.
There have been plenty of research done privately and by the government about the danger and abuse that people can suffer in a nursing home. In 1997, Time Magazine suggested that as many as 35,000 Americans were dying before their time, or suffering unnecessary pain.
There are different types of abuse:
This causes a body injury, physical pain, or impairment. Some of the more common practices of physical abuse include striking, with or without an object, hitting, beating, pushing, shoving, shaking, slapping, kicking, pinching, and also burning. There is also the unnessessary use of drugs and physical restraints, force-feeding, and physical punishment that also fall under the physical abuse criteria.
Sexual abuse is a nonconsensual sexual contact of any kind with a nursing home resident. Sexual abuse can be anything from unwanted touching, sexual assault, rape, sodomy, coerced nudity or even nude photography.
Emotional or Psychological Abuse
This is inflicting anguish, pain, or distress through verbal or nonverbal acts. It can be verbal assaults, insults, threats, intimidation, humiliation, and/or harassment. In addition, it is considered abuse to treat a capable resident as an child, giving the resident a "silent treatment", or isolating them from his/her family, friends, or even regular activities.
This is defined as the refusal by the worker to fulfill his or her obligations to the resident of a nursing home. It includes failing to give necessary care such as food, water, fresh clothing, personal hygiene, medicine, safety or even comfort.
Abandonment is also very serioius. Abandonment is basicly the desertion of a nursing home resident by a nursing home worker who has assumed responsibility for providing care for the resident in question.
Financial or Material Exploitation
This is the illegal or improper use of funds, property or assets of a nursing home resident. It can be cashing a resident?s checks without permission, forging a signature, stealing money or any other belonging, deceiving so that a resident may sign any document (contracts or will), and the improper use of guardianship, or power of attorney.
There have been plenty of lawsuits to combat these people who take advantage of the most vulnerable. Unfortunately, nursing home neglect is still a threat today and it must be acted upon. The message must be sent that these crimes will not go unpunished. If you or anyone you know has encountered any of these types of abuses, it is imperative to file a complaint in order to prevent any further neglect from taking place.