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ERIC Number: ED307539
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1986
Reference Count: 0
Abuse of Patients in Nursing Homes: Findings from a Random Sample Survey of Staff.
Pillemer, Karl; Moore, David W.
Despite persistent allegations of widespread abuse of nursing home residents, the topic has received only limited research attention. This study involved telephone interviews with a random sample of 577 nurses and nursing aides working in long-term care facilities. Subjects reported on actions they had observed other staff commit and on actions they had personally taken. The results indicated that 36% of respondents reported having seen at least one incident of physical abuse in the preceding year, with the most frequent type of physical abuse being excessively restraining a patient. Twenty-one percent of respondents reported having seen excessive restraint of a patient; 17% reported having seen pushing, grabbing, shoving, or pinching a patient. Ten percent of respondents reported that they themselves had physically abused a patient. A total of 81% of respondents reported observing at least one psychologically abusive incident in the preceding year, with the most frequent form of psychological abuse being yelling at a patient in anger. Forty percent of respondents admitted engaging in psychological abuse of patients. Staff who reported that they frequently thought about quitting their jobs and those who tended to infantilize patients were more likely to be abusive toward patients. The findings suggest that abuse of nursing home patients is sufficiently extensive to merit public concern, and that such abuse may be a regular occurrence in institutional life. (NB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: American Association of Retired Persons, Washington, DC. Andrus Foundation.
Authoring Institution: New Hampshire Univ., Durham. Family Research Lab.