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Nursing home abuse and neglect a serious issue nationwide

Kentucky residents with a loved one in a nursing home may be concerned to hear that a recent report from Congress revealed that nursing home abuse was reported in as many as 30 percent of nursing homes in the country. According to the report, of the over 5,200 nursing homes reported on, nearly 9,000 incidents of elder abuse took place over the course of 24 months. This included accidents that could have been prevented had the right measures been taken, residents suffering from malnutrition, bedsores that were not properly treated and residents suffering from a lack of medical care. According to the report, 1,601 of the incidents of abuse were so harmful that the victim was placed in immediate risk of becoming seriously injured, or even dying. Some of these incidents include nursing home workers kicking, choking and hitting residents. One report even revealed that in one incident, one resident of the facility was bribed to harm a second resident.

This is a serious issue. Victims of nursing home abuse can suffer serious harm -- both physically and psychologically. Also, according to one source, victims of nursing home abuse or neglect are 300 times more likely to die than those who do not suffer from abuse or neglect. In addition, there has reportedly been an uptick in the number of nursing home workers who share pictures of the abuse they or another person inflicted on a resident.

The nursing home industry admits that elder abuse is a serious matter, but believes a lack of funding has much to do with this. The industry claims that nursing homes do not get enough state funding, and that nursing home assistants generally only earn between $7 to $9 hourly. This means that the quality of workers at nursing homes can be low. In an effort to reduce the number of incidents of nursing home abuse, legislators have introduced measures that would provide more funding to nursing homes and also make it so that nursing homes maintain a minimum number of employees.

Whatever the reasons are for these troubling numbers, what is important to remember is that if a loved one becomes the victim of nursing home abuse and neglect, they may have legal rights and options. A personal injury lawsuit could allow a victim to seek compensation for the harms they suffered and, more importantly, can hold the nursing home accountable for its actions.

Source: Axcess News, "Report: Nursing Home Abuse Occurs in 1-in-3 Nursing Homes," Melissa Thompson, Dec. 6, 2017

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