Most of us can't imagine what it must be like to get a call from law enforcement officials who are explaining how an elderly relative who lives in a nursing home has been abused -- that a loved one has been the victim of a crime. But, that is likely what has played out for the family members of a 95-year-old woman in nearby Bartow County, who was reportedly abused recently by a nursing home staff member.
The reports indicate that the worker, a 49-year-old woman, was arrested on March 7 and will face criminal charges that include intimidation of elderly people, simple battery toward a person over the age of 65 and exploitation. The charges result from her actions toward the 95-year-old nursing home resident, which allegedly included pinching the victim on the ear, forcing her head down and also forcing her to hit herself in the face.
For the nursing home worker, these criminal elder abuse charges will likely result in an end to her ever being employed again in an assisted living facility. But, beyond the criminal case, perpetrators may also face a personal injury lawsuit from the victim or the victim's family. A personal injury lawsuit may go beyond the individual responsible as well, as it could very well include the nursing home as an entity, with potential claims of negligent supervision or negligent training.
For this elderly victim in Bartow County, and her loved ones, they have most likely been dealing with the humiliation this incident has caused. There have probably been other effects as well, such as potentially moving the resident to a different nursing home. All of these issues would likely be a part of any personal injury lawsuit based on the nursing home abuse that occurred. Individuals in this situation should explore all their legal rights.
Source: Northwest Georgia News, "Nursing home worker charged with abuse of elderly," March 8, 2016