Nursing Home and Elder Neglect and Abuse – Definitions

Nursing Home and Elder Neglect and Abuse – Definitions

Definition of Abuse

Legal definitions of abuse can vary from state to state but abuse generally refers to the failure to provide necessary services, resulting in harm to the resident. It can also include intentional neglect and physical abuse, or financial exploitation.

Virginia Legal Definition of Abuse

In Virginia, Abuse or Neglect of an incapacitated adult is a crime under Va. Code 18.2-369.

Maryland Abuse Statute

In Maryland, abuse is defined by Section 14-101 of the Family Law article, Annotated Code of Maryland, which defines abuse as “sustaining of any physical injury by a vulnerable adult as a result of cruel or inhumane treatment or as a result of malicious act by any person.”

Washington DC Abuse Terms and Relevant Statutes

District of Columbia – § 22–932 Code of the District of Columbia defines “elderly” as a person who is 65 years of age.

Contacting the Ombudsman

Ombudsman are people who can act as advocates or go-betweens in addressing complaints or concerns in our long-term care system. They can bring attention to health concerns in nursing homes in a constructive way and can elevate serious complaints to the local Department of Health.