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Institutional Abuse

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Institutional Abuse (Elder Abuse)

Definition

Mistreatment of someone living in a facility for older people. This includes nursing homes, foster homes, group homes or board care facilities where the staff, are paid to provide care.

Physical signs and symptoms
Broken bones, sprains, dislocations
Broken eyeglasses
Open wounds, cuts, punctures, untreated injuries in various stages of healing.
Sudden changes in behaviour
A care giver who refuses to let visitors see elder person alone.
Reports from elder of being hit, slapped etc.

THIS ABUSE INCLUDES ALL THE OTHER FORMS OF ABUSE

Physical Abuse

Definition
Physical abuse a physical force or violence which results in bodily injury, pain or impairment. It
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Fear of their older family member will get sick and use up their savings, depriving the abuser of an inheritance.
Have negative feelings toward siblings or another family member whom they want to prevent from acquiring or inheriting the older person’s assets.

Signs and symptoms
Unpaid bills, eviction notices, or notices to discontinue utilities.
Withdrawing from bank accounts or transfers between accounts that the older person cannot explain.
Bank statements and cancelled checks no longer come to the elders’ home.
New “best friends”
Belongings or property are missing suspicious signatures on cheques or other documents
The elder is unaware of or does not understand financial arrangements that have been made for him or her.

Emotional/ Psychological abuse

Definition
Psychological abuse is the wilful infliction of mental or emotional anguish by threat, humiliation, or other verbal or non verbal conduct.

Signs and symptoms
Physical indicators
Significant weight loss or gain that is not attributed to other causes
Stress related conditions, including elevated blood pressure.

Behavioural – The perpetrator
Isolates the elder person by not speaking to touching or comforting him or her.

The elder person
Problems with sleeping
Exhibits depression and confusion
Cowers when the abuser is present
Emotionally upset, agitated, withdrawn and non responsive
Exhibits unusual behaviour usually attributed to dementia (e.g. sucking, biting and
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