Concerns about nursing homes or assisted-living facilities can be raised directly to staff at the facility or complaints can be filed with New York State. To lodge a complaint against a nursing home, a complaint should be filed in writing with the state Department of Health by completing the Nursing Home Complaint Form, which is available on line. To lodge a complaint against an assisted living facility call (866) 893-6772.
The most important thing to remember is that elder abuse can be prevented if family, friends, medical professionals, social service and government agencies work together. In the unfortunate cases where abuse has already occurred, these individuals and groups can help the senior obtain redress for the harm done to them.
Wayne Shepard is director of the Delaware County Office for the Aging. ‘Senior Scene’ columns can be found at www.thedailystar.com/seniorscene.