Nursing home abuse is defined as the intentional or unintentional harm of a nursing home resident by a staff member. It can come in many different forms and looks many different ways. In order to prevent, quickly spot, and respond to nursing home abuse, it is important for all nursing home patients and their loved ones to be aware of the different types of nursing home abuse. Below, we offer an overview of the categories of nursing home abuse, as well as warning signs to look out for in each.
Physical abuse refers to a nursing home staff member causing bodily harm or injury to a resident. In a 2020 survey, nearly one in ten nursing home staff members admitted to physically abusing patients.
Examples of physical nursing home abuse include:
Warning signs of physical abuse include:
Physical nursing home abuse is very serious as it can lead to grave complications and even death.
The most common type of nursing home abuse, emotional abuse is a category encompassing verbal and psychological abuse. It involves a nursing home staff member threatening, insulting, humiliating, or degrading a resident. Over 32% of nursing home staff members have admitted to emotionally abusing residents.
Examples of emotional nursing home abuse include:
Warning signs of emotional abuse include:
Nursing home neglect refers to a failure to provide the proper care a resident needs, leading to their suffering. Although it is not intentional, neglect is still a type of nursing home abuse.
Examples of nursing home neglect include:
Warning signs of nursing home neglect include:
Nursing home neglect can lead to very serious emotional and physical consequences including illness, disease, and death.
Sexual abuse is any type of undesired sexual contact, advances, or conduct. When a person has sexual contact with a nursing home patient who is unable to give consent because of their mental state, it is also considered sexual abuse.
Examples of sexual abuse include:
Warning signs of sexual abuse include:
A final type of nursing home abuse is financial abuse, which is defined as stealing from or manipulating a nursing home resident in order to get money from them.
Examples of financial abuse include:
Warning signs of financial abuse include:
Financial abuse is incredibly serious and can be considered a type of fraud or theft in addition to abuse.
Nursing homes and their staff legally owe their residents a duty of care to keep them safe and not harm them. Any failure to meet this duty of care, whether intentional or unintentional, is considered negligence. Victims of any type of nursing home abuse may be eligible for justice in the form of compensation. Damages for nursing home abuse cases may include:
If you or somebody you care about has experienced nursing home abuse, please contact the relevant authorities immediately. If you are interested in pursuing justice, you may also speak to an experienced nursing home abuse attorney for a free review of your case.