October is National Resident Rights Month as established by The National Consumer Voice for Quality Long Term Care.  This month is dedicated to honoring the residents of long term care facilities and the theme for this year is “Speak Out Against Elder Abuse.”  As such, members of the community are encouraged to go out and learn about the unfortunate reality of elder abuse in an effort to stop and prevent exploitation and abuse.

Did you know that every year hundreds of thousands of seniors living in the United States are neglected, abused and exploited at an estimated loss of $2.6 billion or more annually?   Yet only an estimated one in five instances are ever reported!  Consequently, it is up to the community and the efforts of organizations such as the Nevada Long Term Care Ombudsman Program to help solve this issue.  The Ombudsman Program utilizes volunteers to monitor local long term care facilities to ensure that residents are being taken care of properly and respectfully.  This includes, safeguarding the rights guaranteed to long term care facility residents by the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Law such as: the right to be fully informed; the right to complain; the right to participate in one’s own care; the right to privacy and confidentiality; rights during transfers and discharges; the right to dignity, respect and freedom; the right to visits; and the right to make independent choices.

The Aging and Disability Services Division, in collaboration with the Ombudsman Program, has been working with local law enforcement, legal practitioners and other volunteers to spread awareness of elder abuse by educating the community through informational seminars and visits to long term care facilities.  By volunteering your time with organizations such as these and attending their seminars, we can ensure that all seniors in long term care facilities will receive the care they deserve.

For nearly two decades, the Elder Law Attorneys and staff at the Law Offices of Lee A. Drizin have helped hundreds of individuals and families who have been victims of elder abuse, neglect and financial exploitation.  If you or someone you know has fallen victim to any of these crimes, please contact our law firm at 702-798-4955 to speak with a caring and experienced elder law attorney.