According to a new study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, one in five nursing home residents may suffer abuse at the hands of their roommates or fellow residents. Typically, nursing home abuse is thought to come from overtaxed staff and lax administration, but this study suggests one of the greatest dangers to the elderly could be their fellow nursing home occupants.
The study looked at interaction among 2,011 residents across five urban and five suburban state nursing homes in New York over a four-year period. During the one-month observation period at each facility, 407 residents (20 percent of the population) had been involved in at least one occurrence of abuse:
The study only included reported incidents, which suggests the actual incidence of abuse could be much higher.
The lead study author Mark Lachs MD, MPH, professor at the Weill Cornell Medical College at Cornell University to Reuters Health, commented that “interpersonal aggression in nursing homes stems from the fact that people, many of whom have dementia and other neurodegenerative illnesses, are being thrust into communal living environments for the first time in decades, if ever."
Has your loved one been subjected to abuse in a nursing home facility? Call the experienced nursing home abuse attorneys at Steinberg Law Firm today at 843-720-2800. We represent clients throughout the Charleston, South Carolina region.