Nursing Homes and COVID-19 Nursing Home Abuse
Nursing homes and COVID-19 may turn out to be a deadly combination. Nursing home abuse is unfortunately very common. Placing a loved one in a nursing home facility is a difficult decision to make, and certainly when that loved one is abused or neglected by nursing home staff, the situation can become devastating for family members. A 2011 study found that 21 percent of nursing home residents were neglected. Data on nursing home abuse is scarce, as much abuse is not reported. However, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), 1 out of 6 nursing home residents were abused worldwide in the past year. According to a survey of nursing home staff, approximately
- 36 percent of nursing home employees witnessed some form a physical abuse
- 10 percent of employees actually committed physical abuse, and
- 40 percent committed psychological abuse.
Family members of the abused usually find the abuse, whether the abuse is decubitus ulcers (commonly called bed sores) from neglectful care or bruises or broken bones from physical abuse. Currently, we are in a challenging time for these patients and family members. As a result of COVID-19 or the novel coronavirus, nursing homes have closed their doors to family members in order to protect nursing home residents from possible infection of COVID-19. While a necessary protective measure for what some are saying are our nation’s most at-risk population for serious complications or even death from COVID-19, the ramifications of these closures may spike nursing home neglect and abuse cases. The monitoring parties, the parties who check of the physical and emotional well being of their loved ones, are locked out essentially until the influx of the disease has passed.
Some steps that you can take if you or a loved one is concerned about nursing home abuse during the COVID-19 isolation period are:
- Use FaceTime, Zoom or another video stream application that will allow you to physically see your loved one
- Call and use the above applications often to let your loved one and nursing home staff know that they are not forgotten and that you are checking up on them often
- If you cannot use a video application, call and ask your loved one how they are doing everyday. Ask them if they have been fed, of they have been changed, or if need anything.
If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of nursing home abuse or neglect, call our experienced nursing home neglect lawyers for a FREE consultation. We have been fighting for the rights of nursing home patients for over 40 years.
Rizio, Hamilton & Kane, P.C. Philadelphia and Bucks County’s top attorneys
215-567-1900 or 855-822-6783