Elderly abuse takes place in their own homes, in their nursing home, on the street and even in hospitals. Awareness of elderly abuse has been heightened because of the number of elder abuse victims that have been broadcast in the news. It can take many forms such as, physical, emotional, mental, verbal and sexual abuse. Identifying the potential for abuse can be very difficult to detect as things like this are often concealed by the families, care homes or by them elderly person themselves.
Abuse can be a result of many things, for example, if a carer is looking after an elderly person that needs 24 hour care, then that person may become distressed and anxious. This can turn into hatred or anger towards the elderly person as they never get a rest. The anger can then take the form of name calling, beating or neglecting the elderly person and this is by no means acceptable. The elderly person and the carer may feel that there is no way out, however the situation can be avoided if the right care is given.
Respite care can be given to the elderly person and the carer in order for them to get a break from caring for that individual. Respite care is very beneficial to both the carer and the elder person as it allows the elderly person to go into a controlled routined environment where their care and safety is paramount. It is sometimes in the best interest of the client to remove them from potential risk and by giving respite care this allows that to happen.
Vulnerable adults that live on their own can be taken advantage of by various different people for very different reasons. They may be subject to bogus callers or salesmen. This can have serious mental effects on an elderly person, especially if they live alone.
If Mrs Smith, living with her husband, was subject to a “fake” salesman calling, trying to take money off them on a regular basis, that is a form of abuse. That person is taking advantage of Mrs Smith. Why? Maybe it is because they feel powerful and that they can control someone that is more vulnerable then them. No matter what this is still against the law, and the prevention of this happening is essential.
There has been media attention on this topic, adverts have been published to show, how vulnerable an elderly person can be and also how misleading a bogus caller can be. Therefore, identity cards have been issued to most salespeople and security locks have been given to the elderly person to heighten their safety and security.
How is abuse recognised?
It is very difficult to recognise abuse, especially if it is not a physical thing we can see. This however, does not make any of the other forms any less damaging. If an elderly person is a victim of abuse it is up to those that care for that individual to recognise and eliminate that risk.
If Mrs Smith was being financially exploited by her family, it would be a difficult thing to recognise. Maybe she would never receive help as the situation was never identified as a risk. However, if the G.P or anyone realised that Mrs Smith was being financially exploited, maybe through conversation or Mrs Smiths appearance. The best thing to do is to remove Mrs Smith from the abusive household and maybe she could go into a residential home.
Nursing home abuse can be very difficult to detect. If a resident is being abused by a carer, it is the problem of that home to make that carer aware of policies and procedures that he/she is breaking and how they can be affected by what they have done.
Many patients are at risk because one out of four nursing homes every year is cited for causing death or serious injury to a resident, according to government figures.
Mrs Steenson is at risk of being sexually, financially, verbally, mentally and physically abused. She went into the home because her well-being was seen as better off whilst being in the private nursing home, however, it is important that we know that it does exist and that it is very difficult for a person to recognise.
A person may be being physically abused in the home because of their religion, race, gender or sexual orientation, this with reference to the car value base is the wrong practice.