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Who is likely to cause nursing home abuse?

Placing a loved one in a nursing home is likely a major decision that didn't come easy. And whether it is a short-term or long-term stay, it is likely that many concerns are going through the minds of loved ones. Will they get enough attention? What if they miss a medication? Is the facility adequate enough? What if they are hurt or become ill?

And while the care, health and well being of a loved one takes center stage, nursing home negligence and abuse are also a concern. Who is likely to cause nursing home abuse? Recent statistics indicate that nursing home abuse is unfortunately common; however, the most common source of elder abuse is from the residents at the nursing home facility.

According to recent study, roughly one in every five nursing home residents experience verbal or physical abuse at the hands of other residents. In this study, mistreatment was tracked through in-person interviews, observations, chart reviews and accident or incident reports.

Although is not surprising to discover the existence of elder abuse among residents, the rate of these incidents is shocking. Every year, it is estimated that around 5 million elderly Americans are victims of nursing home abuse; however, it is believed that the number is much larger and that for every case reported, as many as 23 cases go unreported.

There are various causes for nursing home neglect or abuse, one of them being inadequate staffing. A negligent staff could fail to see the signs and symptoms of abuse among residents, generating cause and liability on the staff and the nursing home facility.

It is important to note that there are rights of nursing home residents, and these residents have the rights to take actions when they fall victim to neglect of abuse. A legal action could help them hold a negligent party accountable, helping them collect compensation for any damages suffered.

Source: Cbsnews.com, "Nursing home abuse common, but from an unlikely source," Mary Brophy Marcus, June 15, 2016

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