During the coronavirus pandemic, elderly abuse has been increasing at high rates. Even outside of a pandemic, elderly abuse often goes unreported due to societal prejudices against those in advanced age. COVID-19 has made elderly abuse more prevalent because it is affecting those who are older at much higher rates and more severely, causing caregivers and the public as a whole to treat elderly people differently. Because they should be more careful to self-isolate or distance, it has limited the ability for caregivers to actually provide much-needed care in person. Additionally, more regulations on nursing homes and eldercare centers have increased the pressure on caregivers to provide good care, the stress from which can hinder their motivation to do the best possible job. This results in negligence, which can escalate to elderly abuse.
What is Elderly Abuse?
Elder abuse is any kind of action, knowing or unknowing, that results in harm to an elderly person. Elder abuse is committed by someone is who an elderly caregiver. Elder abuse can consist of physical abuse when an elderly adult is inflicted with physical pain or injury; sexual abuse, or nonconsensual sex acts; neglect of responsibility to provide food, shelter, or care; exploitation or property or finances; emotional abuse, or infliction of mental or psychological harm; and abandonment. Elderly abuse can be intentional or it can be an act of negligence on behalf of the caregiver.
What to Do if You Think a Loved One is Being Abused
If you suspect that an elderly loved one is suffering from elder abuse, you can seek justice and compensation, even during the coronavirus pandemic. Contact a lawyer in your area with a track record of pursuing and winning elder abuse cases. It could be the difference between your loved one living or dying, and pursuing a case can ensure that other elderly adults do not incur the same abuse.