Friday, March 06, 2009

Eldercare Abuse in Nursing Homes

By now you should all know that I detest nursing homes. It is not the idea of a nursing home that I dislike so much, I actually adore the idea of seniors having the option to live somewhere where everyone is in their age range and where they have someone looking out for them 24-7-365. Unfortunately in my experience that is not the case in the nursing homes I have had personal interaction with.

It downright sickens me when I read something such as a recent article from Parade Magazine about Protecting the Elderly From Abuse in which the lead example of abuse was a 90-year-old grandmother who, in 2006, was raped by a worker at the nursing home where she lived. As scary as that was, it paled in the shadow of the next sentence: "Similar incidents over the years..."

Say WHAT?!

Now, if that is not enough for you to reconsider trusting your loved one to a nursing home, read a little further into the article and you find that in seven states, 7,000 applicants for eldercare positions had violent criminal records or a substantiated history of abuse. I have no idea just how many applications there were in those states (or even which seven states they looked at), but I can tell you that it scares me to think that 7,000 of those who applied for eldercare positions were the kind who would abuse or injure the very people we entrust to their care.

And there are no laws in place that would force screening for eldercare applicants. They screen those who want to work with children, so why not screen those who are applying for an eldercare position?

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