January 27, 2012
A new bill has been approved by the Utah House of Representatives that redefines what constitutes emotional nursing home abuse.
The article discussing this news appears on DeseretNews.com and highlights how the new definition of emotional abuse in nursing homes means that, for example, if an Alzheimer’s patients swears at a staff member this incident will not have to be reported to the state human services. The article says these incidents are handled directly by the nursing home and do not require state intervention.
However, this redefinition of emotional nursing home abuse brings up the question of what if a staff member is the one emotionally abusing a nursing home resident, through ridiculing them or otherwise–will these incidents’ not require a report being filed and sent to state authorities?
What is important in this discussion is that this redefinition is not so broad that is means abusive nursing home staff may not be held fully accountable for their actions.
Their are many forms of nursing home abuse–physical, emotional, sexual, etc. All forms of abuse are extremely harmful and any suspicions of abuse need to be reported immediately to the authorities. We also advise family of nursing home abuse victims to contact a nursing home abuse lawyer.