The prevalence of nursing home abuse is astonishing. Data by the Nursing Home Abuse Justice shows that two in every three nursing home employees have admitted to committing one or many forms of abuse. The same survey revealed that 1 out of every three seniors had suffered abuse in nursing homes.
There have been countless reports about the rapid growth of the aging population. The latest census report shows that by 2060, 25% of Americans will be 65 years and older.
In Particular, Tacoma has a 13% population of seniors aged 65 and older. This rise has triggered staggering pressure on resources in nursing homes. Most critically, there is understaffing, which makes most residents unable to receive the utmost care they deserve.
Data by the National Center on Elder Abuse show that the number of nursing homes in the US stands at 26,514. This is not enough to cater for the 56 million seniors in the national majority who may need nursing home care.
The National Center on Elder Abuse reports that 1 in every ten nursing home residents is a target of abuse in nursing homes. The abuse can be financial, verbal, physical, or sexual.
Understaffing is just the tip of the iceberg. Much of the red-spotted incidents of nursing home abuse stem from insufficient systems for protecting older adults in these facilities, which is why you should find a reputable nursing home abuse attorney.
Most nursing homes don’t protect residents who report incidents of abuse, and they don’t even bother to report the same to the police. This breeds more harassment, exploitation, and violence against the victims.
Massive Oversight Failures
Abuse is rampant even in homes with good Medicare and Medicaid ratings. 90% of all nursing homes have residents who have fallen victim to abuse in one form or another.
A CNN report showed how nearly 1000 nursing homes failed to properly handle or prevent cases of rape and assault at their facilities.
Some reasons for this blatant disregard for proper elderly care in nursing homes include botched background checks and unqualified staff.
In 9 of every 10 cases of abuse in nursing homes, the abuser is someone the victim knows. Most often, the abuser is a nursing home staff, but in many other cases, it’s a resident.
Under reported Cases
According to the World Health Organization, the increased abuse rate in nursing homes is due to functional dependency, declined mental health, and cognitive impairment among residents.
Many residents of the homes cannot communicate properly due to mental or physical infirmities. In many other cases, the victims fear retaliation from staff if they report cases of abuse or neglect. Women are more statistically likely to become victims of abuse in elderly homes compared to men.
Financial exploitation is among the biggest forms of elder abuse in nursing homes. It occurs when someone illegally uses or forcefully takes an older adult’s money, assets, or property. Most forms of financial exploitation in elderly homes involve deception, coercion, and intimidation to access the senior’s finances.
The abusers usually target seniors they believe are vulnerable or quick to manipulate. Because the targeted victims are likely to be weak with declining cognitive function, the scam artists often succeed.
A new report by the American Health Care Association (AHCA) shows that inflation for nursing home services and goods increased by 8.5% between 2021 and 2022.
Economists speculate that more inflationary increases will continue in 2023. Nursing home lawyers warn that the rampant inflation could spur more cases of abuse, particularly financial exploitation and gross neglect in nursing homes.
The high inflation certainly means increased labor costs for qualified nursing home staff. Increasingly facilities may trim the ratio of nurses to residents, leaving many elderly without the proper care and attention. The number of slips and falls in care facilities could increase, and so might the starvation and poor hygiene cases.
As economic challenges increase, nursing home attorneys in Tacoma understand that seniors are the ones who bear the brunt. Nursing homeowners always choose to reduce quality services to cut costs while leaving residents to suffer the results.
This understanding leads to the conclusion that the earlier reported statistics might continue to worsen in 2023. Bedsores, dehydration, physical assault, and many other forms of abuse may become more rampant even in facilities that have never reported these incidents.
Your elderly loved ones deserve a safe space to age in peace and comfort. Nursing home abuse can cause pain, suffering, disability, and even death. It would be wise to work with an experienced attorney to protect the rights of your loved ones.