Recent statistics indicate that nursing home abuse is a societal issue of great magnitude in the U.S. As the baby boomer generation continues to climb into its retirement years, discussions of nursing home care are likely to continue to intensify and become more popular. Elder abuse continues to be a major problem in the U.S. and must be resolved. Hospitals and nursing home facilities must treat elderly citizens with the respect and care that they deserve. In addition, elderly individuals are also provided with certain legal rights under federal laws. It is vital that people in the U.S. are informed of the legal rights that nursing home residents are afforded under the law.
The Elderly Population in 2050
By 2050, those who are 65 and older will make up at least 20 percent of the total U.S. population. Because elderly individuals will make up a significant portion of the population, it is important that society prepare for these years. If elder mistreatment continues to be a major issue in 2050, then millions of people will be at risk of suffering from inadequate care.
The Inability to Care for Elderly Individuals’ Needs
Nursing homes often engage in elder mistreatment due to understaffing and the inability to provide adequate care for senior citizens. Nursing home may lack the resources that they need to care for elderly individuals, such as exercise facilities, beds, rooms, medicine or even food. Facilities that depend on government subsidies may not have enough funding to provide a sanitary and clean environment for residents. They may also fail to hire the appropriate number of staff workers for elderly citizens.
For those nursing facilities that depend on government subsidies, additional funding may be required to ensure that these facilities comply with federal and state laws. Private nursing facilities should also ensure that they use adequate funds to comply with these laws. Often, private-run facilities do not want to use funds derived from profits to improve the quality of care that they provide.
Increased Risks of Inadequate Care for Those with Disabilities
Disabled elderly individuals are also at risk of receiving mistreatment in nursing home facilities. These individuals are often most vulnerable due to the fact that they may not be able to communicate with family members. They may be unable to tell family members that they have been abused or neglected in any way. It is very important that family members make extra effort to understand the type of care that their loved ones are receiving from staff workers. If you notice that a loved one has any signs of bruising, then this is likely an indication that he or she has been the victim of abuse.
Abusers in nursing home facilities tend to target the most vulnerable members of the population. They may attempt to abuse those who are unable to communicate or have limited ability to move. For these residents, it is important that special protections are in place.
Assert the Legal Rights of Your Loved One
Those who have been abused may be entitled to compensation under the law. In addition, a nursing home may be required to take certain actions if it has violated federal laws aimed at protecting the legal rights of nursing home residents. Nursing homes may be required to hire additional workers or invest in additional medical equipment for residents. They may need to improve the sanitation of their facilities.
If your loved one has been the victim of abuse or neglect in a nursing home, it is important that you stand up for his or her legal rights. It is vital that you get in touch with a lawyer as soon as possible. A nursing home abuse lawyer can conduct an investigation of the circumstances that may have lead to your loved one’s neglect or abuse. An attorney will also be able to hold administrators accountable for the mistreatment of your loved one.