If you have an elderly loved one in a nursing home, he or she may be at greater risk of elder abuse and neglect now that the new administration has relaxed nursing home accountability for these injustices. Nursing home industry reps lobbied the administration, claiming that current laws are too focused on “catching wrongdoing rather than helping nursing homes improve.”
Mark Parkinson, president of the American Health Care Association, a nursing home industry trade group, wrote a letter directly to Trump, asking him to provide nursing homes with “relief” from overly-harsh investigations and fines.
Among the most commonly reported, serious nursing home violations are: falls, neglect, mistreatment, and bedsores. During the four-year period between 2013 and 2017, approximately 40 percent of federally-regulated nursing homes nationwide were cited for at least one “serious violation.”
A Slap on the Wrist
Under the new guidelines, nursing homes that are first-time offenders may get off with a simple warning, even if the violation results in the death of a patient. Further, even repeat offenders will likely receive lower fines for their violations than previous years.
Much of the nursing home abuse in this country already goes unreported or underreported. Advocates for elder safety fear that these relaxed regulations will only exacerbate an already serious problem. A MA nursing home abuse lawyer can help you determine how to proceed if a loved one has been abused or neglected in a nursing home or long-term care facility.
Elder Abuse Statistics
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), elder abuse is “any
abuse and neglect of persons age 60 and older by a caregiver or another person in a relationship involving an expectation of trust.” Elder abuse doesn’t always occur in a nursing home facility; it also happens with in-home care, and a family member is often the one responsible for the abuse or neglect. However, nursing home abuse and neglect are most common in understaffed facilities with poorly-trained workers. The statistics below shed some light on the severity of this growing problem:
- The actual rate of elder abuse is nearly 24 times greater than what is reported.
- The most common type of elder abuse is psychological, which is typically more difficult to detect or prove than physical abuse.
- In the state of New York, at least 260,000 elderly adults have reported some type of abuse.
- The “National Elder Mistreatment Study” revealed that up to 10 percent of those surveyed had suffered some type of abuse in the 12 months leading up to the study.
- A 2000 study conducted by the National Center on Elder Abuse found that of 2,000 nursing home residents surveyed, 44 percent had suffered abuse, and 95 had suffered neglect, or had witnessed someone else being neglected.
A Boston nursing home abuse attorney can help you recover damages if a loved one has been the victim of nursing home abuse or neglect.
Altman & Altman, LLP – Nursing Home Abuse Attorneys Serving Boston and the Surrounding Areas
If a loved one has been abused or neglected in a nursing home or long-term care facility, the skilled legal team at Altman & Altman, LLP can help. We have been protecting the rights of MA seniors for more than 50 years. When you make the difficult decision to move a loved one to a nursing home, you do so with the expectation that staff will provide them with a safe environment, and loving, compassionate care. Realizing that your loved one is being mistreated can be an emotionally devastating experience for everyone involved. At Altman & Altman, LLP, we can help you protect your loved one’s dignity, obtain compensation for associated medical expenses and pain and suffering, and ensure that the mistreatment comes to an immediate end. Don’t go through this difficult time alone. Contact Altman & Altman, LLP today for a free and confidential consultation about your case.