Types of Abuse in a Nursing Home

Nursing home residents need to be treated with the utmost care and should be protected with legal rights if they have been injured as a result of abuse. Abuse can take form in several ways in nursing homes. This article below discusses the different ways nursing home residents could suffer from abuse. In just one year, around five million people are affected by elder abuse. The number could be much higher since 5 million was the number only reported. Usually, elders are afraid of reporting any nursing home abuse for fear of being left alone. Another reason may be that the nursing home resident has mental impairments that would hinder them from bringing forth any claims.

According to the National Center for Victims of Crime, nursing home abuse is very common but never spoken for. They conducted a study in which they broke down the different types of abuse and the percentage of people that have experienced it. Below is the breakdown of the different types of abuse that nursing home residents usually face:

  • 4% Physical abuse
  • 1% abuse from other nursing home residents
  • 4% psychological abuse
  • 15,3% neglect
  • 9% sexual abuse

Nursing Home Abuse Statistics

  • The National Council of Aging has reported that there has been at least $36 billion lost each year because of elder financial abuse
  • $5.3 billion in medical care costs are accounted for from physical elder abuse
  • 1 in 20 older adults has come forward saying that they have suffered from financial abuse
  • The majority of those who have committed nursing home abuse are men
  • Those residents who are around 79 years of age or older or more prone to suffer through elder abuse
  • Nursing home residents are more likely to report financial abuse than any other abuse
  • Victims of elder abuse are three times more likely to die than those who are not susceptible to abuse
  • Elders who have suffered from nursing home abuse are at risk of incurring depression or other psychological problems

Different Types of Abuse in Nursing Homes

According to the National Center on Elder Abuse, there is about six different nursing home abuse types. Below are examples of the six different types of abuse:

  • Financial exploitation: this occurs when a nursing home resident is preyed upon for their vulnerability by a nursing home employee. This occurs when the nursing home employee receives some type of financial compensation not accounted for in the employee’s salary. For example, this could include when the nursing home resident pays an extra salary to the nursing home employee for the same services. This could also occur when the nursing home resident writes a will granting their property to the nursing home employee. It is also very important to check for signs of financial exploitation. Signs of financial exploitation include missing possessions, identity theft, or forged checks.
  • Sexual assault: this occurs when the nursing home employee takes advantage of the nursing home resident sexually.
  • Violence.
  • Nursing home neglect from necessities: these necessities could vary from water to medication. Signs for neglect include dehydration and malnutrition in the nursing home resident.
  • Emotional or verbal abuse: This occurs when the nursing home employee uses words or actions to make the nursing home resident feel inferior. Examples of this could include insults or name-calling to the resident in order to make them feel isolated. This is a way of control exerted upon by the nursing home employee.
  • Physical abuse: physical abuse occurs when the nursing home employee physically injures and harms the nursing home resident in order to instill fear and superiority. Some examples of physical abuse include scratching, internal bleeding, pushing, or punching the nursing home resident. It is very important to constantly check for signs of abuse. Signs of abuse could include bruises, scratches, or any broken bones. Sometimes, nursing home residents are too afraid in voicing their concerns and speaking up against abuse. That’s why it is very important to look for signs of abuse if your loved one is in a nursing home.

All the above examples should be taken equally seriously. The above signs of abuse could lead to severe injuries, oftentimes even death. All the above types of abuse result in serious injuries to the nursing home resident. The nursing home resident needs to have their legal rights accounted for. This is why it is very important to hire an experienced nursing home abuse attorney to navigate through the legal process and ensure fair compensation for the nursing home resident. Abuse is very difficult to deal with, and no amount of money could fairly compensate the nursing home resident. However, it would put the residents’ mind at ease to know that they were able to assert some rights.

Who is at Risk of Nursing Home Abuse?

In a study done by the Nursing Home Abuse Justice, there are certain groups that are more susceptible of nursing home abuse.

  • Women are more likely to be abused than men
  • Those who were found to be in the lower socioeconomic status are more likely to be abused.
  • Those who have poor mental health conditions are more likely to be abused
  • Those who have dealt with extreme trauma in their past are more likely to be abused

Who is the Abuser?

Although there is no specific group that could be labeled as the abuser IN nursing home situations, there are certain groups that are more common. These groups include:

  • Other nursing home residents
  • Nursing home staff members: a recent study conducted found that over 64% of nursing home staff members admitted to abuse.
  • Family members

What Should I Do if I Know Someone Who is Abused?

If you know someone who’s going through nursing home abuse, you should tell someone immediately. The person you speak to should be someone you trust. If possible, record what the nursing home resident says and the physical signs you have noticed. For example, if there is any bruising, make sure to note and let the third-party know. Our attorneys advise that you alert the authorities immediately if you notice any signs of nursing home abuse. It is very important to recognize nursing home abuse. Failure to recognize may lead to severe injuries, even death.

If you or someone you know has been abused in a nursing home scenario, do not be afraid to contact an experienced team of attorneys today for free no risk consultation. During this consultation, we will determine what type of abuse nursing home resident went through. We understand how difficult it is for a nursing home resident to come forward and talk about their views. We will do whatever it takes to make sure that you are compensated for your injuries. We have offices located in every major city in California, including Los Angeles, Fresno, Irvine, etc.

***Disclaimer: This page is created by Heidari Law Group for educational purposes. This article provides a general understanding of the law. It does not provide specific advice. By using this site and reading through this page, there is no attorney-client relationship created between you and any member of Heidari Law. Further, due to the constant change of the law, some parts of the information above may no longer be good law.