ELDER ABUSE, A TOO OFTEN IGNORED PROBLEM

A new study released in October of 2010 by the American Association for Justice named eldercare abuse as a humanitarian crisis. The study delved into patient reports and complaints of elder abuse including a Florida resident who was a significantly notable victim of nursing home abuse. The report of his abuse included numerous incidents of injuries suffered in multiple falls, severe weight loss, pressure sores, a number of infections, problematic dehydration, and starvation which eventually led to his death.

Advocates fighting for the rights of the elderly place a portion of the blame on the way that the nursing home system is run. Many nursing homes operate much like an apartment building, but instead of individual single or multiple bedroom units, the “bed capacity” is what is rented. A large portion of the generated income is “guaranteed by the federal government” and paid for through programs like Medicare and Medicaid.

Private businesses like schools usually have a higher faculty to student ratio than public schools, but the opposite tends to be true in of for-profit nursing homes. In fact, the American Association for Justice report found that “for-profit nursing homes have an average 32 percent fewer nurses and 47 percent higher deficiencies.” The cost-cutting has led to an increase in neglected or abused senior citizens. Critics of the system describe the problem as a “cost versus utility” societal issue. The level of care that the elderly require brings about a cost to the system and taxpayers that is higher than the amount of production that they can provide to society. The mentality, they say, has led to the significant instances of abuse and neglect. 

Elderly neglect is a real problem that could become fatal if it continues to be ignored. Contacting a lawyer as soon as you suspect elderly abuse in a nursing home can save the life of a loved one. Contacting a lawyer can also help save other elderly lives as well.  A Milwaukee disability and workers comp attorney can also handle elderly neglect.  Be sure to contact a workers comp and disability attorney Milwaukee to report elderly abuse today before it’s too late.

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