Many Kentucky residents trust nursing homes to care for their elderly loved ones. However, violence sometimes occurs with residents who have dementia. This is a problem of nursing home neglect and not one that should be attributed solely to mental illnesses.
Nursing home conflicts are common
Problems among nursing home residents are common, especially with those suffering from dementia. While it is believed to be an issue of mental illness, the reality is that when one resident attacks another, it is often due to neglect on the part of the nursing home staff. An act of violence against a frail elderly person in declining health can have devastating consequences. The individual could be left with serious injuries or even die.
Why nursing home neglect occurs
Nursing home neglect can occur for a variety of reasons. One of the biggest factors is understaffing. If there aren’t enough staff members at the facility, some residents can go unsupervised for longer periods. Staff might have to focus on certain patients who need constant care and attention. This can increase the risk of someone with dementia attacking other residents.
Another reason why nursing home neglect can happen is through inadequate training or credentials. If a staff member is not properly trained to handle their job, they might not know how to act in certain situations. Sometimes, the nursing home fails to perform background checks to ensure that an applicant is qualified or fit for the job. For example, if someone has a criminal background or struggles with substance use disorder, they might not be equipped to handle elderly people with dementia and other health issues.
Studies have revealed that nursing home residents with dementia often act out with violence when their special needs aren’t met. When there is a situation of neglect, it leads to the resident reaching their breaking point and responding by perpetrating violence against others.