According to a report by Masters in Health Care, there are some very disturbing statistics about the long term care facilities that many of our friends, relatives, family members and loved ones call home.
Among the shocking facts revealed are the following:
• Over 30% of nursing homes have had some form of elder abuse either by the staff or other residents, including sexual abuse, physical abuse, psychological abuse, neglect and malnutrition.
• In 2005, nearly 92% of all nursing homes received at least one citation for a deficiency.
• Approximately 90% of the time when there is some form of abuse, it is done by the staff, other residents or non-strangers.
• In 1999 there were 5,000 death certificates for nursing home patients that listed the cause of death to be dehydration, bed sores and food deprivation.
• Most nursing home abuse cases never end up being because of the declining mental capacities of the patients and the failure to detect it by the staff members or the patient's family.
• Over 50% of all nursing home patients have no close family to watch out for nursing home neglect or abuse.
• Many times a nurse's aide or other staff member may be called upon to care for as many as 30 patients.
• Approximately 30% of all nursing home patients are overmedicated with tranquilizers.
• Approximately 92% of all nursing homes have at least one staff member who has a criminal background.
• With the aging of America, there are not enough nursing home beds to keep up with the growing need for long term care facilities.
• In 2007, there were nearly 258,000 complaints registered against nursing homes for an average of 20 for each.
• In 2001, one out of four nursing homes received a citation for serious injury or death of a patient.
• The cost of living in a nursing home continues to rise. In 2003, the average annual cost was $66,000 but by 2021 it is expected to be $175,000.
With the projected growth in California of those over 60 years of age to increase by 112% from 1990 to 2020 and those over 85 years of age to increase by 143% over the same time period, more will be seeking the care of long term care facilities. More particularly, that need will be highlighted after 2030 when the first group of baby boomers reaches the age of 85 years old.
These statistics mean that it is increasingly more important for all of us with family, friends or relatives in nursing homes to be aware of any indication that there are any red flags of neglect or abuse. If you have any doubts of what may or may not constitute nursing home neglect or abuse, please contact Christopher C. Walton, a San Diego elder abuse attorney. Call 619-233-0011 now to schedule an appointment for a confidential, no obligation consultation to discuss your particular situation. All cases are handled on a contingency basis.
Related blog posts:
169 California Nursing Homes Receive One-Star Federal Rating in 2011, California Elder Abuse Blog, February 27, 2012
California Guidelines for Recognizing and Reporting Elder Abuse, California Elder Abuse Blog, December 11, 2011