According to the World Health Organization, each year around 5 million older Americans fall victim to elder abuse, neglect, or exploitation. Experts also believe that for every case of elder abuse or neglect reported, as many as 23 cases go unreported.
The WHO suggests that Americans may not be aware of the extent of elder abuse in our care facilities because good data is scarce. Indeed, since hospitals and nursing homes in the US are largely privately-owned, if these facilities even keep data regarding elder abuse issues and investigations, they generally do not make that data public - and have no incentive to do so.
The rate of severe falls among Americans over 65 years-old has been climbing sharply in recent years. Even more alarming, researchers say bad falls can be linked to the increasing prevalence and treatment of conditions such as diabetes, stroke, Parkinson’s, and heart disease, since in many cases the medications prescribed to treat these diseases actually increase the risk of falling.