A new Arizona law sponsored by Republican Senator Nancy Barto is aimed at helping protect senior citizens from bad in-home caregivers. The law will require agencies who provide non-medical, in-home care to disclose information like training, background checks, service costs, and hiring/firing policies on a yearly basis. Since caregiving agencies are unlicensed and unregulated, these new requirements will help consumers make more informed decisions about the people they are allowing into their home.
It is estimated that Arizona currently has roughly 600 in-home care agencies throughout the state. While most other states require certification and licensing requirements, Arizona does not. With one of the fastest-growing populations of older people in any state and an exploding non-medical care industry, it is no wonder that elder care abuse is a growing concern.
Agencies are currently not required to run background checks on their employees to check for a criminal history. This lack of transparency has been a major problem in the in-home care industry and has left elderly citizens vulnerable to mental, physical, and financial abuse. Under the new law, agencies who fail to disclose this information would be in violation of the law and will face punishment.
Elder abuse typically occurs in the place where the senior citizens live, whether in their own home or in an institutional setting like a nursing home. Elder abuse comes in many forms, including:
- Physical abuse: Causing physical pain, impairment, or injury through a non-accidental use of force.
- Emotional abuse: Speaking to or treating an elderly person in a manner which causes emotional pain or distress.
- Sexual abuse: Contact with the person without their consent. This can also include forcing them to undress or forcing them to view sexual material.
- Neglect: Failure to fulfill a caregiving obligation.
- Financial abuse: Using an elderly person’s property or finances without their consent.
- Healthcare abuse or fraud: Unethical actions carried out by healthcare providers that compromise the level of care elders receive.
If you suspect that you or a loved one are victims of elder abuse, either in an institutional setting or by an in-home caregiver, do not hesitate to contact Knowles Law Firm, PLC as soon as possible. Our lawyer can help you receive compensation for any injury or pain and suffering that you or a family member has endured at the hands of negligent doctors and caregivers. For more information, schedule a free consultation by filling out an online form, or call (888) 332-5621.