Woman Arrested for Elder Abuse, Including Neglect of Mother’s Severe Pressure Sores

By Nursing Home Law Center

Mother Elder Abuse

A recent story from Oklahoma City reminds me again that elder abuse is not only limited to nursing homes.

According to NewsOK.com, police found 57-year-old Deborah Ramirez trapped in her home in June 2010, surrounded by cockroaches and suffering from five bone-deep bed sores. Her main caretaker was her daughter, 28-year-old Carmella Saldanna. Saldanna was arrested on a felony charge of elder abuse, and will be tried in court on July 6.

This tragic story, along with forcing us to ask basic questions about elder care, also caught my attention because of specific laws in Oklahoma.

According to NewsOK.com, Oklahoma is one of only seven states to have passed a law authorizing an adult protective program. This seems incredible to me, considering the sheer number of cases involving elder abuse.

“Victims can speak up in some instances, but some victims cannot or will not,” Adult Protective Services Director Barbara Kidder reportedly said, adding that the number of abuse reports was the highest-ever in 2010. Kidder says her office saw more than 17,600 cases.

The Oklahoma Adult Protective Services, formed in 1977, is a division of the state Department of Human Services.

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