20% of Nursing Home Residents Are Abused by Other Residents
A United States study suggests that one in five nursing home residents are abused by other residents.
Details of the Nursing Home Abuse Study
According to Reuters, the study took place during a four week period, and it looked at ten different nursing facilities, five in an urbanized area and five at a suburbanized area. All facilities were in the state of New York. The study also included medical charts and accident/incident reports.
In total, the reviewed the history of 2,011 individuals who had been placed in the nursing homes, and the study showed that 407 of them had been involved in at least one occurrence of abuse by a resident. Most of the interpersonal aggression among the residents was attributed dementia or other illnesses that are not being properly considered or treated.
Dr. Mark Lachs, who is a researcher at Weill Cornell Medicine and director of geriatrics at New York Presbyterian Healthcare System, stated that “While memory loss and other cognitive problems are cardinal features of dementia, the behavior problems that accompany dementia are notorious triggers for nursing home placement.”
Lachs continued by adding, “When many such people are asked to share common spaces or become roommates, these situations can occur.”
Nursing Home Abuse Statistics
- Residents included in the study were about 84-years-old on average, and 73 percent were women.
- Roughly 16 percent of them resided in a unit for dementia patients.
- While verbal and physical abuse were the most commonly reported types of abuse residents suffered from, about 20 percent of the incidents involved invasion of privacy.
- In about 4 percent of cases, one resident directed menacing gestures or facial expressions at another resident.
- Slightly less than 3 percent of cases involved some form of sexual abuse.
- Verbal taunts were the most common, accounting for about 45 percent of these cases.
- Physical assaults, made up 26 percent of incidents.