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Greater Risk of Abuse against Alzheimer’s, Dementia Patients in Nursing Homes

There is no denying that the country as a whole is aging with the Baby Boomers approaching and possibly having reached retirement. As this trend continues over the next 20 years, experts expect the demand placed on nursing homes and other long-term care facilities to skyrocket as those older Americans need assistance with their daily lives.

As our nation ages, the number of individuals affected with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease increases as well. Today, estimates indicate that approximately half of all adults over the age of 85 have some form of dementia and nationally, more than five million adults are suffering from signs of the disease.

Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease are progressive, debilitating conditions with no known cures at this time. Those who suffer from these diseases may find themselves confused by tasks and situations that were once routine and they may not be able to take the action needed to avoid potential harm. For these reasons, many with advanced dementia rely upon others for tasks like cooking, bathing, dressing, and ambulating so that their confusion does not lead them into a dangerous area or a potentially hazardous scenario.

There should be a reasonable amount of trust placed in the care of a loved one with dementia when that loved one is in a nursing home or other facility. After all, contracting with a home to provide care and treatment means that care and treatment should in fact be rendered and not simply alluded to. But studies reveal that this is not always the case as those suffering from dementia appear to be the victims of nursing home abuse and assault more often than other patients of nursing homes who do not have cognitive issues.

A 2010 study published in the Journal of American Geriatrics Society found that 47 percent of all dementia patients in the United States had been mistreated by one or more caregivers who were supposed to be aiding those patients. On its face, this statistic is horrendously disturbing but it becomes even worse when you realize that many who suffer from dementia are not in a position to report the misconduct they endure or to transfer their care to another facility or provider, leading to situations where abuse or neglect happen repeatedly to the same individual.

No resident of a nursing home should be treated with disregard and no resident should ever have to worry about her safety while in the care of others, but unfortunately in Illinois and elsewhere in the nation, that is not the case. If you suspect wrongdoing against someone you love or if you have reason to believe that nursing home abuse has taken place, make sure you understand your family’s rights and whether you may be entitled to relief.

The personal injury attorneys at Abels & Annes, P.C. will be standing by 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year to take your call toll free at (855) 529-2442 or locally at (312) 924-7575 where we will offer you a no-cost, no-obligation case consultation about your legal options. We will keep everything discussed during the consultation confidential and if we represent you in your case, we will never charge you a fee unless we make a recovery on your behalf.

If you suspect the unthinkable, call Abels & Annes, P.C. today and let us fight for you.

Prior Blog Entry:

Bed Handles Recalled but Less than 1 Percent Response Rate, Endangering Seniors, Illinois Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Blog, published September 24, 2015.

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