By: Darrell Castle

Nursing home abuse is often associated with the staff members and caretakers as the offenders, but a growing and serious problem is resident-on-resident abuse and the staff is often oblivious.

Nearly one in five people living in a nursing home is involved in at least one aggressive encounter each month, according to a Cornell University study.

The same study found that of more than 2,000 residents:

  • 16% were involved in verbal incidents such as cursing, screaming or yelling
  • 6% were involved in physical violence, including hitting, kicking or biting
  • 1% were involved in sexual encounters such as exposing one’s genitals, touching other residents or attempting to gain sexual favors

These incidents result in physical conditions like bruises, cuts and broken bones. But they can also result in mental and emotional conditions like depression and feelings of hopelessness.

There’s enough staff in these facilities to make sure violent outbreaks like these don’t happen though, right?

Well, no. Overcrowding and understaffing are two of the root issues behind many of these incidents occurring without any staff awareness.

Those two issues are of major concern and are problems to solve, but could another issue be plain carelessness?

Recently, a nursing home in Ohio had more registered sex offenders than any other in the state. Due to repeated violations, the nursing home closed. One stated violation included NOT reporting SEXUAL ABUSE.

Folks pay good money to put their elderly loved ones in a nursing home, not because they want to (generally), but because they truly believe their loved one will be better-cared-for there by professionals who can give their full attention.

Then shouldn’t the nursing home – the facility being trusted and paid to take care of these loved ones – care for them to the highest standard? Conventional reasoning (and employee handbooks) would probably state staff members providing sufficient care would include: not abusing their patients, monitoring to make sure other patients aren’t abusing patients and reporting incidents whenever they witness patients are being abused.

Overcrowding and understaffing are fixable problems. Failure to report an incident of abuse is morally and ethically wrong. Resident-on-resident violence is an inexcusable reason for someone’s loved one to be injured in a nursing home.

If you think your loved is being victimized – abused, neglected or both – please contact us today. We’ve handled nursing home abuse and neglect cases here in Memphis for decades and would love to help you and your loved one.

We won’t stand for nursing home abuse and you shouldn’t either – it’s a sad thing to witness. Whoever is responsible should be held accountable. We’ll fight to make sure they are and ensure you and your loved one are properly compensated.

For a FREE case evaluation, you can call our office at (901) 327-1212. You can also fill out one of the contact forms on this page (right and bottom of the page) to have someone from our office contact YOU.

Darrell Castle & Associates has received multiple Client Distinction Awards from Martindale-Hubbel for client satisfaction, so I guarantee you that you’re in good hands here.