Avoiding Elder Abuse in Healthcare Facilities

Last week, New York’s own Senator Charles Schumer made news by drawing attention to the prevalence of elder abuse that goes unreported.  Spurred by the story of an elderly bus monitor in Rochester who was bullied by a group of middle-school boys, Shumer said that only about 1 in 24 cases of elder abuse are reported to authorities.  With his estimates of 260,000 elderly New York residents facing abuse each year, Schumer is pushing for increased legislation to address the issue.

What is Elder Abuse?

According to the Administration on Aging, elder abuse is “any knowing, intentional, or negligent act by a caregiver or any other person that causes harm or a serious risk of harm to a vulnerable adult.” While much of this abuse happens, sadly, at the hands of friends and family members, much attention has been given to cases where seniors in long term care facilities have been treated inappropriately by professional caregivers.  Care for the elderly is a challenge for even the most highly trained caregivers, but without the training and support to manage these challenges, unfortunately some resort to unacceptable behavior.

How can Elder Abuse be avoided?

One of the most effective ways to avoid elder abuse in an institutional setting is to provide training for nursing and support staff.  Increased training can both help staff to identify and stop existing cases of elder abuse and also to understand how best to cope with the stresses that are a part of working closely with the elderly: dementia, loss of mobility, and hygiene issues, to name a few.

How Can We Help?

LTCAdministrator.com is committed to bringing you the appropriate resources so that your Long Term Care facility can thrive.  Our directory of healthcare service providers is intended to help you find the answers to timely issues.  For help with averting issues with elder abuse in your facility, Upstairs Solutions brings online training programs to your staff, including CEU Continuing Education programs as well as custom programs to ensure that your staff is prepared to face anything.

Founded by a group of healthcare providers, Upstairs Solutions was originally developed to improve training in their own healthcare facilities. When they discovered that other facilities also needed consistent, efficient, and economical training delivered in a convenient manner, Upstairs Solutions was born.

Specializing in internet-based training programs for nursing and support staff covering orientation, compliance training, and in-service instruction, Upstairs Solutions has expertise in administration, operations, risk management, nurse consulting and educational training.

In order to mitigate the risks of elder abuse, Upstairs Solutions could help craft an in-service on how to manage stress for caregivers, and then compliance training to ensure that any signs of existing abuse are addressed.  (Maybe US wants to make a specific offer? Or a quote from them??)

It is hard to imagine anyone on your staff being abusive to a resident, however the prevalence of elder abuse is too high, and legislation is too high profile, to not take steps to ensure that your facility does everything possible to reduce the chances that you will be impacted.

As Senator Schumer said last week, “Once we make sure that all cases of elder abuse are reported, we have to provide law enforcement and health care professionals with the resources and data they need to fight back.”  You don’t have to wait, you can empower your organization with the resources to fight back right away!

For any other service or product needs of your Long Term Care organization, see the full directory of healthcare resources that LTCAdministrator.com has brought together.  We are sure to have something to help any challenge you face!

02. July 2012 by Ruth Folger Weiss
Categories: Aging, Health Care, Long Term Care | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment