Did you know that Americans are living longer? This means that the elderly population over the age of 65 is continually growing at an unprecedented rate. It is estimated that there will be 60 million people over the age of 65 by 2030, which means that many of them will need nursing homes and assisted living facilities as they continue to age. The problem is that the rapid growth of those needing nursing homes will place a physical and emotional stress on caretakers and nursing home staff members. Sadly, because of the stresses, Florida nursing home abuse—including neglect, physical abuse, emotional abuse, and even sexual abuse—may occur even more than it does now.
Elderly abuse occurs far too often in this day and age. Unfortunately, we do not know how serious the problem really is because abuse may be missed, overlooked, or underreported. It appears there are three reasons why nursing home abuse goes underreported, including:
- Fear of retaliation: nursing home residents often fear the abuser, what he or she will do, and retaliation. Residents know that they are dependent on the nursing home staff for food, care, and their most basic needs. Sadly, this causes some residents to not report abuse because they fear either the consequences of the staff or being discharged from the facility.
- Lack of physical or cognitive ability to report the abuse: many residents with dementia are victims of abuse because abusers know that they will have difficulty reporting the abuse. Sadly, abusers prey on those with physical and mental impairments.
- Not knowing what to do: residents and family members sometimes do not report the abuse because they don’t know who to report the abuse to. They lack the knowledge of what to do in a situation they have never been faced with before.
If you or a loved one is a victim of abuse, you need to report it. For help learning about your rights, please call an experienced Sarasota nursing home abuse attorney at the Mallard Law Firm today for a free consultation at 888-409-3805.