Elderly Americans who are abused, often end up in the emergency room and unfortunately, the abuse is sometimes not diagnosed, according to CBS News in "Elder abuse often missed in the ER."
It is estimated that 10% of American senior citizens are the victims of elder abuse. It can be difficult to catch the perpetrators because the victims are often isolated and medical care is not regularly sought.
This is alarming because it means that many victims of abuse could be treated for injuries caused by their abusers and released back into the care of those same abusers. While the primary job of emergency room staff is not to detect elder abuse, they can and should do a better job of making sure that injuries suffered by their elderly patients are not the result of abuse.
This new study will hopefully lead to a renewed focus in emergency rooms on this important issue and to increased staff training about how to detect potential elder abuse victims.
If you should suspect any situations of elder abuse, please contact authorities or an elder law attorney.
Reference: CBS News (Nov. 25, 2016) "Elder abuse often missed in the ER."