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Michael J. Doyle, Attorney At Law Michael J. Doyle, Attorney At Law
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Federally Mandated Nursing Home Reform Seeks to Curb Elder Abuse

The thought of someone abusing a loved one you’ve entrusted to their care can be infuriating. Your outrage is justifiable, but don’t let anger distract you from taking necessary legal steps to protect your loved one. Sadly, elder abuse and nursing home neglect is a serious problem that has shown little sign of resolution. You and your family may need to consider hiring an attorney to represent your interests and hold the neglectful nursing facility responsible for your loved one’s injuries.

The Seven Types of Elder Abuse

The National Council on Aging has shared statistics that one out of every ten senior Americans over 60 years old has been the victim of some form of elder abuse. The US Department of Health & Human Services manages the National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA), an agency responsible for studying and monitoring elder abuse in the United States. There are several forms of elder abuse ranging from gross abuse to subtler forms of mistreatment. The United States has a large senior population. In 2019, 16.5% of the country was over the age of 65. If current trends continue as expected, 22% of the country will be over the age of 65 by 2050. With such a large growing senior population, the US government has realized it needs to address concerns for these vulnerable citizens at risk of various forms of abuse and neglect.

The National Center on Elder Abuse has identified seven types of elder abuse:

  • Physical abuse
  • Sexual abuse
  • Emotional or psychological abuse
  • Neglect
  • Abandonment
  • Financial abuse
  • Self-neglect

Elder abuse is also an issue being closely watched by the World Health Organization (WHO.) According to their studies, 64.2% of nursing home staff members have admitted to committing some form of elder abuse.

Common Signs of Elder Abuse

Elder abuse may not take the form you’d expect in every instance. While there are cases where elderly nursing home residents have visible injuries, many times, the abuse is subtler or harder to identify, like financial, emotional, or psychological abuse.

Common signs of elder abuse include:

  • Emotional distress
  • Tattered and worn clothes
  • Unexplained Bruises and injuries
  • Neglected home cleanliness
  • Malnourishment
  • Changes to financial documents, like wills or trusts

If you think your loved one has shown any of these signs of elder abuse, you can’t afford to wait. Hiring an attorney to handle your loved one’s abuse case will help make quick changes to their circumstances. A lawyer can have your loved one moved to a safer situation and recover financial losses. Filing a lawsuit against a negligent nursing facility on behalf of your loved one and family could save other seniors from receiving poor treatment or being abused. If your loved one was injured or abused because of the negligent care of a nursing home, other elderly residents are likely being harmed. Your early action can save your loved one and many others.

Federally Mandated Nursing Home Reforms

The Covid-19 pandemic helped shed a very bright light on the many indignities and gross deficiencies suffered by seniors in nursing facilities throughout the United States. To combat this problem, The White House released information about new regulations for nursing home facilities that protection groups hope will lead to improved conditions for many seniors. The President announced his reforms would provide robust improvements to current laws, increased funding, and expanded penalties to combat current inadequacies.

According to a White House press release, federal regulation will require:

  • every nursing home provides a sufficient number of staff who are adequately trained to provide high-quality care;
  • poorly performing nursing homes are held accountable for improper and unsafe care and immediately improve their services or are cut off from taxpayer dollars; and
  • the public has better information about nursing home conditions so that they can find the best available options.[1]

Additionally, the Biden-Harris Administration will be enhancing accountability and oversight by:

  • Adequately Fund Inspection Activities
  • Beef up Scrutiny on More of the Poorest Performers
  • Expand Financial Penalties and Other Enforcement Sanctions
  • Increase Accountability for Chain Owners of Substandard Facilities
  • Provide Technical Assistance to Nursing Homes to Help them Improve

Fighting for the Protection of Your Loved Ones

At Michael J. Doyle, Attorney at Law, we are focused on helping families fight to protect their loved ones by providing access to our knowledgeable and committed legal team. We fight for victims of neglect and abuse because no one should be abused and robbed of their dignity by those charged with their care. Attorney Doyle will give your case the personal attention it deserves so your voice is heard! We have a no recovery, no fee policy, so you can rest assured knowing you will benefit from affordable, high-quality counsel at no cost to you if we don’t deliver. We only get paid if you get paid. Call us today at (505) 219-2176 to schedule a consultation.


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