According to new research released by The National Research Council Panel to Review Risk and Prevalence of Elder Abuse, approximately one to two million elderly Americans over the age of 65 have been abused in some fashion by a caregiver. According to The Bureau of Justice Statistics, up to 30% of nursing homes and facilities are cited for incidents of elder abuse each year. Experts suggest that the problem may be even more prevalent than these statistics suggest, since many instances of elder abuse are not reported. In fact, experts believe that for every elder abuse case reported, five more occur but are not reported.
Elder abuse can range from financial abuse to emotional abuse, physical abuse, sexual abuse, and neglect. In extreme cases, elder abuse and neglect can lead to bed sores, dehydration, malnutrition, wandering, and more. Many Florida slip and fall cases are the result of neglect or abuse, as are many physical injuries among the elderly.
In many cases, it is difficult to prove that elder abuse has taken place, especially in a facility. Elderly patients may be unable or reluctant to provide details of the abuse. Even if it is very clear that abuse has taken place, facilities usually involve many patients and many workers. It can be hard to find the responsible parties specifically in this instance. As well, bruises and other signs of abuse are often explained away as accidents or simply part of the process of getting older.
Florida elder abuse is an especial problem because Florida has a graying population. Many elderly persons come to Florida each year to get away from cold conditions in a home state and many people decide to retire in Florida to take advantage of the beautiful weather. Unfortunately, in cases of Florida elder abuse the consequences may be tragic. In extreme cases, abuse can lead to death. In other cases, elder abuse can result in bankruptcy, serious illness, and serious injuries. If a Florida victim of elder abuse has decided to retire in Florida, they may be isolated from family back home and therefore more vulnerable.
If you suspect that an elderly loved one is the victim of elder abuse, contact a qualified Florida personal injury attorney for assistance. In many cases, a good attorney can investigate the claims and even find evidence if abuse has taken place. As well, a good attorney can help you pursue a legal claim against a caregiver, which can help you find the resources to provide other care and treatment for a loved one.
If you need a qualified Florida personal injury attorney to discuss your possible elder abuse case, call the experienced legal team at the Flaxman Law Group for a free, no-obligation consultation to discuss your case. The Flaxman Law Group has been helping elder abuse patients in Miami, Hollywood, and Homestead, Florida as well as surrounding southern Florida communities. We may be able to help you as well.