How many times have we read in the newspapers or heard from friends about a resident-upon-resident attack in a nursing home? It happens frequently! Dementia and frustration can lead the most tranquil of residents to push, pull, and hit other residents. Some residents are very “territorial” and see roommates, and others, as violators of their personal space. For example, just last week a roommate upon roommate assault at the Extendicare York nursing home in Sudbury, Ontario lead to fatal injuries to the victim of just such an attack. The attacker had a long history of aggressive behavior but nothing was done by the facility to address this “ticking time bomb!” Read about this sad case here.
What can you do if your loved one is exposed to threats of physical violence or intimidation in a nursing home? First, request an immediate meeting with the Director of Nursing and Administrator. Put them on notice of your concerns and document your concerns in writing. Tell the nursing home administration that federal law requires the nursing home to discharge residents who endanger the health and/or safety of others. Tell them to read Title 42 of the Code of Federal Regulations §483.12.