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Abuse of the Elderly: How can we stop?

By brian barrick
September 18, 2013

Background Checks

Abuse of the elderly is a horrible epidemic; it does need to be stopped.  An assisted care facility should do extensive background checks on all potential employees.  The question of whether these potential employees have been fired in the past for abusing residents is definitely something that an employer has to know about.  A number of companies are using extensive background software in order to make sure they are hiring the right employees.


It can also be helpful if a worker at a facility has an elderly parent, friend or sibling that they have to take care of as well.    A health care worker that truly understands how difficult it is for a person to lose their mobility is more likely to show compassion towards a patient.


A loved one should come in and check to see whether a resident is being abused.  The process of detecting uncommon bruises can be quite helpful in detecting the abuse.  A loved one should never hesitate to ask questions if they begin to see strange bruises on a resident.    Abuse of the elderly can also be verbal.

Types of Abuse

If an elderly resident says they are being verbally abused or scapegoated by another resident then this is definitely something that you should look into.  An elderly resident that says they are being excluded from group activities should be able to have someone rectify this problem for them; all residents need to be included in activities.   Abuse of the elderly is no laughing matter.  Abuse of an elderly person can also be viewed as a type of neglect of bed sores.

Bed sores can occur when someone can no longer move around in bed and change positions on a regular basis.  A staff member must be alert to this type of elderly abuse.  Abuse of the elderly can happen everywhere. The abuse can occur in communities where there is a lot of people in a long term care facility for example.  All residents must keep their eyes and ears open in order to prevent this abuse of abuse.


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