Nursing home abuse is a tragic phenomenon, and everything should be done to curb it. Whether it be an overworked nurse who snaps at a difficult resident, or an angry employee who takes out their own aggression on those who cannot fight back, there is no excuse for engaging in nursing home abuse. However, the sad reality is that nursing home abuse is grossly underreported, with many residents afraid to report the abuse of those who are responsible for their daily care out of fear of reprisal.
Despite that fact, one state is considering a bill that would eliminate a person’s ability to anonymously report nursing home abuse. According to an article by U.S. News and World Report, Illinois legislators are considering a bill that would require each complaint of nursing home abuse to be accompanied by the reporter’s name. If the person calling does not want to provide their name, the report will not be filed.
Of course, doing away with anonymous reporting will limit the number of complaints of abuse, which is why the nursing home industry is in favor of the bill. In fact, about 20% of all abuse allegations currently reported are done so through anonymous calls. While the bill’s sponsor claims that the names of reporters would be held confidential, the mere fact that callers are require to disclose their identity will likely result in fewer calls.
Even when steps are taken to “remedy” nursing home abuse, the resident may still be the one to suffer. According to the article, many facilities will move a resident from one unit to another when there is a complaint of abuse. However, such conduct only acts to insulate the abusive nurse by removing the “problem” patient, and it allows the nurse to continue caring for other residents, perhaps those less willing to speak up.
The bottom line is that nursing home abuse is a serious issue across the United States, and it should be treated as such. When nursing home abuse is discovered, those responsible often face criminal and civil repercussions, ranging from jail time and probation to compensation for those injured or traumatized as a result of the abuse.
Thankfully, Maryland continues to allow residents and their families to make anonymous reports of abuse. Should that change, this blog will keep its readers updated.
Has Your Loved One Suffered in a Maryland Nursing Home?
If you or a loved one has recently suffered abuse or neglect in a Maryland nursing home, you may be entitled to monetary compensation for all you and your loved one have been put through. Nursing homes are not unfamiliar with these lawsuits, however, and they are accustomed to defending against them. Therefore, it is advised you consult with a dedicated attorney at the Maryland nursing home abuse law firm of Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC at 410-654-3600. Call today and set up your free consultation.
More Blog Posts:
Nursing Home Lawsuits Brought by Surviving Family Members, Maryland Nursing Home Lawyer Blog, published March 28, 2016.
Politicians Speak Out against Nursing Home Abuse Posted on Social Media, Maryland Nursing Home Lawyer Blog, published April 7, 2016.