No One Should Tolerate Elder Abuse! Learn How To Report It And Help Yourself Or Your Loved One Now
October 22, 2018 16:28 By Fabiosa
There’s no standard protocol across the country, as different states have different laws protecting older adults and different services to provide help and safety in case of elder abuse. We believe that no one should tolerate mistreatment, whether it is your family member or the staff at your nursing center. Nowadays, only 1 in 5 incidents of elder abuse is reported. Imagine how many people didn’t receive help and suffered from neglect of physical abuse? Unfortunately, such a horrible thing can happen to anyone. Therefore, it is of the highest priority to learn how to report elder abuse. You have the right to be safe and have your needs to be fulfilled.
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Short statistics of elder abuse cases
Due to the fact that so many incidents remain unreported, it is almost impossible to conduct a full study. But those facts and numbers that we have are enough evidence to ensure that elder abuse is a huge problem that needs to be addressed as soon as possible. The number of older adults increases each year, which means more people can become victims of the mistreatment.
- Around 6 million registered incidents of elder abuse occur in the US each year.
- California leads the nation in the number of elder abuse cases with 11%.
- Women are as much as about 30% more likely to be abused than men.
- According to different studies, it is medical personnel or nursing staff who most often reports elder abuse (35%). Family members report around 16% of all cases, whereas self-reports happen extremely rarely – around 8%.
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How to report elder abuse?
In this article, we are describing ways of reporting elder abuse in different states: Washington, Illinois, Ohio, California, and Texas.
Foremost, many states use the term “vulnerable adult” to describe older adults who might become victims of elder abuse. Typically, vulnerable adults are people of age 60 or older who are unable to care for themselves due to physiological or mental issues. Also, vulnerable adults are people of age 18 and older with some specific disabilities or live in a nursing home.
The Washington State Department of Social and Health Services recommends reporting any suspected abuse or neglect via phone number: 1-866-ENDHARM (also 1-866-363-4276). In case of emergency situation, however, or if you believe an older adult requires immediate help you should call 9-1-1.
According to the Adult Protective Services Act, anyone can report elder abuse, and the identity of the reporter will not be disclosed without written permission or by order of a court. This implies that you can report an incident anonymously. The 24-hour elder abuse hotline: 1-866-800-1409 and 1-888-206-1327 (TTY). Those who live in nursing homes can call the nursing home complaint hotline: 1-800-252-4343. In case of life-threatening emergencies call 9-1-1.
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You can report a case of elder abuse online on the Ohio Attorney General website here. You can also call the Ohio Department of Health: 1-800-342-0553 if you suspect neglect or elder abuse. Another option is calling Adult Protective Services (APS) at 1-855-644-6277.
California’s system of reporting elder abuse is by far the clearest. It is divided into certain types of abuse for your ease.
- So if you want to report the health-related type of abuse, you can call the Office of Attorney General, Bureau of Medi-Cal Fraud and Elder Abuse at 1-800-722-0432, or you can report the incident online here.
- If you want to report abuse at your nursing home, you can call also call the Office of Attorney General, or the special Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program at 1-800-231-4024.
- If you want to report financial abuse, you should file a complaint the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) online at their website here.
- In case of emergency, you can always call 9-1-1 or you county district attorney's office.
If you suspect elder abuse in any nursing home or assisted living facility, you should contact the Department of Aging and Disabilities Services (DADS) at 1-800-252-2412. And if the suspected incident occurs not in a health care facility, you should contact Adult Protective Services (APS) at 1-800-252-5400 to report elder abuse.
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Remember, if you, your loved one, or any vulnerable adult is in a life-threatening situation and requires immediate help, you can and should call 9-1-1 no matter what state you are living in. You can take actions today. According to the Elder Justice Act of 2009, basically anyone who is responsible for the well-being of an older adult is also responsible for reporting suspected cases of elder abuse. We believe that by raising awareness about how to report elder abuse, we can help many people all over the country. So can you!