Elderly Lives Matter®

Does Staff Burnout Increase the Risk of Elder Abuse?

On Behalf of | May 4, 2021 | Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect

If you have participated in caring for your aging parents, you can attest that tending to the needs of a grown adult is both exhausting and overwhelming at times. In fact, for this reason, you may have chosen to move your parents to a nursing home where they can receive quality care from people with the knowledge, skills and training to provide what you feel unable to give.

Even the most qualified staff can sometimes experience burnout and have less patience and empathy as a result. Overtired employees may have a higher risk of abusing or neglecting the people in their care. Finding a nursing home facility that prioritizes the professional needs of its staff can boost your confidence in their ability to provide unparalleled care.

Institutional abuse risks

Your parents have the right to compassionate and customized treatment. In your search for a qualified institution, focus on facilities that have a reputation for hiring and retaining empathetic and loyal staff members. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, poor treatment of employees can impact the treatment of residents like your parents. Factors that increase the risks of institutionalized abuse by staff include the following:

  • Inadequate breaks between shifts
  • Negative perceptions of responsibilities
  • Stressful work environment
  • Inadequate recognition

Mitigating burnout

When you shop around for a nursing home facility, do not shy away from asking about staffing policies and scheduling. Voice your concern about making sure that your parents’ caretakers possess the skills and demeanor to patiently listen and care for the residents.

Facilities that implement employee recognition programs and provide ongoing opportunities to improve required skills can more effectively retain their workforce and minimize staffing issues. Well-rested employees with access to resources designed to make their job more efficient can give your parents the love and attention you want them to have.

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