A lot of people assume that nursing home abuse is isolated, occurring only in the rare instances when the news reports it. After all, there are a number of regulations and laws meant to keep nursing home residents safe. Unfortunately, the truth is far bleaker than most people realize. Nursing home abuse is rampant across the U.S., including right here in Virginia. Let’s look at some of the numbers.
Statistics surrounding nursing home abuse
There are a lot of statistics out there pertaining to nursing home abuse and neglect. The World Health Organization just recently compiled a number studies that show that 1 out of every 6 individuals age 60 and older and who reside in a community setting have experienced some form of abuse. As frightening as that number is, it’s even more terrifying when looked at in the nursing home and long-term care context.
There, the study found that two-thirds of nursing home staff admitted to having committed abuse in the last year. This abuse can take many forms, including psychological abuse, physical abuse, sexual abuse, and financial abuse. Each of these forms of abuse can lead to serious consequences for victims. Those who are subjected to nursing home abuse can suffer from serious injuries that sometimes turn fatal, and those who are fortunate enough to survive oftentimes develop psychological issues.
A closer look at home
It’s worth noting that the World Health Organization’s study pertained to nursing home and long-term care worldwide. But the statistics limited to America aren’t much better. In fact, a 2019 study found that as much as 10% of those age 60 and older are subjected to some form of abuse. While that might sound a lot lower than the worldwide figure, that number has to be looked at in context. After all, it’s estimated that just 1 out of every 25 instances of elder abuse gets reported.
Building your nursing home abuse case
Those who engage in nursing home abuse need to be held accountable. To do so, you need to be prepared to take legal action. While regulations might lead to fines being imposed on nursing homes for bad behavior, they don’t really do much to deter such harmful actions from occurring in the future, and they do nothing to help you or your loved one recover from the harm that has been inflicted.
So how do you go about building your legal claim? There’s a lot you can do. To start, take pictures of everything that seems suspect, especially visible injuries. Be sure to notate the circumstances surrounding the injuries and how your loved one reacted when questioned about them. You’ll want to do the same when talking with the nursing home’s personnel. Also, don’t overlook the value of speaking with other nursing home residents. Even if your loved one is too afraid to speak up, there may be someone else there who has a lot to say.
Looking at regulation violations can be helpful, too, as they may show a history of abuse and neglect. Although it might take some legal action on the front-end, obtaining security footage can also help you catch nursing home abuse.
Know how to navigate the legal complexities of your case
Nursing home abuse cases can be more complicated than you expect. There can be a lot of argument on what seem like legal formalities, but failing to appropriately address these issues and argue to the applicable law can jeopardize your case. You don’t want that to happen.
Fortunately, you don’t have to try to navigate the labyrinth of the legal world on your own. Skilled legal professionals like those at our firm stand ready to help you and your loved one fight for a just outcome that secures accountability and recovers compensation. To learn more about our law firm and how we may be of assistance, please continue to browse our website.