Examples of Abuse and Neglect in Nursing Homes

Nursing home abuse takes place every day and comes in many forms. By exploring recent examples of abuse and neglect in nursing homes, you can stay informed about this growing problem. You can also take steps to prevent the scenarios described below from happening to your loved one. See recent examples of nursing home abuse.

#1. Physical Abuse in North Carolina

A woman was worried about the care her mother was getting at Peak Resources, a nursing home in Cherryville, North Carolina. In January 2020, she installed a hidden video camera to see if she could uncover any signs of abuse or neglect.

The camera was able to record an incident the day after installation. In the video, a nursing assistant was seen screaming at the resident — who has Alzheimer’s Disease — while changing her. The resident was also moved violently across the bed during the incident.

After the video was shown to the nursing home director, two employees were fired. However, state social workers refused to open an investigation and the local District Attorney has not yet filed charges of elder abuse.

#2. Nursing Home Neglect Has Deadly Consequences

A nursing home in Hawarden, Iowa, was sued for negligence after a 58-year-old woman died in 2019. The woman’s estate alleges that staff members failed to help her after a serious fall which contributed to her death — a clear example of nursing home neglect.

According to the reports, nursing home staff members didn’t even notify the woman’s family until over a month after the incident, and one of the staff members allegedly believed the woman was faking that she was in pain.

When the resident was finally admitted to the hospital, it was revealed she had broken two of her vertebrae and that the fractures had become infected. She died soon after due to the infection.

The Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals’ Health Facilities Division issued the nursing home a $10,000 citation after the woman’s death.

#3. Nursing Home Staff Charged With Sexual Abuse

In 2020, two former nursing home employees of Marshall Manor Nursing Home in Guntersville, Alabama were indicted for allegedly abusing five nursing home residents.

The charges included:

  • Sexual abuse
  • Public lewdness
  • Elder abuse
  • Harassment
  • Indecent exposure

The nursing home said it fired the employees and notified the victims’ families as soon as they were made aware of the abuse. The facility also noted that it has fully cooperated with the District Attorney’s Office and the Guntersville Police investigation.

The former employees had their bond set at $70,000 each.

#4. Physical Abuse Leads To Lawsuit

A Kingston, Pennsylvania nursing home was fined $50,000 by the state’s Department of Health and Human Services after a nurse’s aide allegedly used excessive force against a female resident. The resident ended up with broken ribs and significant bruising.

After the state’s fine and citation, attorneys for the victim filed a nursing home abuse lawsuit in early 2020. The lawsuit alleges that the woman was physically abused just days after she was first admitted into the nursing home. She is now seeking compensation to cover her medical expenses.

#5. Financial Abuse in Illinois

In 2019, two former Lincoln Park Symphony Nursing Home employees were arrested and charged with a felony count of elder financial abuse.

Prosecutors claim that the pair stole $136,900 and $205,197 respectively from a 98-year-old patient at the facility who had dementia. They stole the funds by writing fraudulent checks and having their names added to the resident’s bank account.

After the resident’s bank flagged suspicious activity, she was moved to a different nursing home facility.

Prosecutors say that justice would require the nursing home to return the stolen funds after a civil suit.

Learn From These Examples: Prevent Nursing Home Abuse

The examples of abuse and neglect in nursing homes shown above reveal that anyone can be affected. Fortunately, there are ways you can reduce the risks of nursing home abuse and neglect.

Here are some ways to keep your loved one safe:

  • When choosing a nursing home, make sure it is of high quality
  • Check in with a nursing home resident as often as possible through in-person or digital visits
  • Note any changes in their physical appearance (like bruising) or mood
  • Keep track of their bank accounts and other financial assets

If you or someone you love is in immediate danger, report nursing home abuse to local authorities immediately. Reporting the abuse or neglect can help keep your loved one safe and ensure that others are not harmed.

You may also be able to hold nursing homes accountable for abuse or neglect through legal action — learn more with a free case review.

Author:Nursing Home Abuse Justice Team
Nursing Home Abuse Justice Team

Nursing Home Abuse Justice was founded to shine a light on nursing home and elder abuse. Every day, thousands of people in nursing homes and assisted living facilities are abused. Our team helps educate seniors and their loved ones on the common causes, signs and preventions of nursing home abuse. We report on real-world studies and current events from respected news outlets to expose this national problem.

Last modified: September 23, 2020

View 5 References
  1. Mahoney, M. (2020, January 09). Hawarden nursing home sued for negligence. Retrieved September 19, 2020, from https://www.nwestiowa.com/news/hawarden-nursing-home-sued-for-negligence/article_b47f7302-2923-11ea-bdb8-53275fd6642c.html

  2. Thusius, A. (2020, March 24). Former employees at Guntersville nursing home arrested for elder and sexual abuse. (n.d.). Retrieved September 19, 2020, from https://www.waaytv.com/content/news/Former-employees-at-Guntersville-nursing-home-arrested-for-elder-and-sexual-abuse–569059301.html

  3. Kalinowski, B. (2020, January 28). Kingston nursing home sued over alleged abuse. Retrieved September 19, 2020, from chttps://www.citizensvoice.com/news/kingston-nursing-home-sued-over-alleged-abuse/article_6de9ae86-6ed7-5135-9d48-6afaacac3b37.html

  4. Ochsner, N. (2020, January 07). Concerned daughter captures elderly mother’s nursing home abuse on hidden camera in N.C. Retrieved September 19, 2020, from https://www.wbtv.com/2020/01/06/concerned-daughter-captures-elderly-mothers-nursing-home-abuse-hidden-camera/

  5. Cherney, E. (2019, October 08). 2 former nursing home workers charged with stealing life savings from resident with dementia. Retrieved September 19, 2020, from https://www.chicagotribune.com/news/ct-lincoln-park-nursing-home-workers-charged-theft-20191007-ge2zyi5k3fhj3nrbtgtjr5tyga-story.html