Posts tagged "elder law"

US Senate Talks About Fraud and Scams Targeted at Seniors

Have you read the report by the US Senate's Special Commission on Aging? They identified the top 10 frauds that target our seniors across the country.  Here is the list that they compiled:

Throwback Thursday: Pennsylvania's Elder Abuse Task Force

Our Throwback Thursday blog post this week is focusing on what Pennsylvania officials are doing to protect our rapidly growing elderly population.  To check out more about a task force created in 2006 to address our aging population's needs, read below!
Did you know that Pennsylvania has its own Elder Abuse Task Force? Created in 2006, this state-wide initiative examines allegations of people  who cheat, deceive or abuse older Pennsylvanians.  The force is make up of a diverse group of participants, including prosecutors and support staff. As part of their duties, the force also has a public education component.  PA also has an elder abuse hotline, which can be reached by calling the number (866) 623-2137. According to an article by StateCollege.com, "The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has the third highest percentage of elderly residents in the United States with nearly 2 million residents over the age of 65. In addition, the fastest growing segment of Pennsylvania's population is those who are 85 years of age or older.".  To read more from the original article, please click here. 
Pennsylvania also has a state-wide Elder Law Task Force that examines Pennsylvania's issues with guardianship, abuse/neglect, and access to justice for the state's elderly population. This special task force is chaired by Justice Debra Todd.  The main aims of the task force include suggesting amendments for court rules, as well as recommendations for education and best practices involving the care of senior citizens. The task force has been given one year to complete its work.
Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer serving western and central Pennsylvania.  He takes cases for older Pennsylvanians who have been abused or neglected.  For more information on his Altoona, PA area practice, please call his office at 814-946-4100 or visit his website at http://www.stoehrlaw.com.  Attorney Stoehr takes cases in Blair and the seven surrounding counties.

Throwback Thursday: NO Granny Snatching?!

We've all heard of kidnapping, but what in the world is "granny snatching"?! Read more from our Throwback Thursday post below!Information taken from Daily Local News article written on 7/23/2012 by Janet M. Colliton. Full story can be found by clicking this link.

Holiday Gift Services Makes Great Difference For Seniors in Doylestown Area Community

Wow, what a great idea to help our state's nursing home residents during the holiday season!  A Doylestown-based nonprofit organization called Wrapping Presence recently spent the day helping area nursing home residents pick out gifts from new and donated items to wrap for Christmas and Hanukkah presents.  This is a really special service, especially for those residents who cannot physically or mentally get to a store, pick out presents for their family and friends, and stand in line.  The staff at the nursing home spent several weeks ahead of time figuring out what their residents may be interested in giving as gifts, and tried to coordinate the donations to meet their wishes.  The donations of gifts and money towards gifts had been a year-long fundraising process, culminating with this event where the seniors were able to pick out their gifts.  The event was arranged with the help of over 650 volunteers who work with 19 nursing homes in the Doylestown area. 

ANOTHER Nursing Home Investigation Opens in PA

In keeping with this week's earlier blog post, the Pennsylvania State Attorney General's office has certainly been busy recently!  They just investigated an Erie area nursing home last week, using agents to look into the facility via a search warrant.  Although the specifics of the investigation are still unknown to the public, agents were seen leaving the facility with boxes of files and computer hard drives.  The facility in question, Saint Mary's Home East, is a combination of a residential home, nursing home, and adult care services.   In an article published by ErieTVNews.com, area residents were interviewed and expressed concern, since many of their loved ones currently reside in the facility.  The Attorney General's office did say that this current investigation of Saint Mary's is not connected to the 25 open cases they are investigating against Golden Living  we wrote about earlier this week. 
Many allegations against nursing homes and assisted living facilities stem from reports of elder abuse and neglect. Elder abuse can come in many forms, not just physical abuse.  Many common instances of elder abuse include emotional, financial, psychological, and neglect.  If you feel that a loved one has been a victim of elder abuse, please contact Attorney Doug Stoehr to set up a free consultation.  Attorney Stoehr has experience and knowledge pertaining to elder abuse legal claims, and will work hard to fight for the rights of your family or friend. Call his office at 814-946-4100 to set up your consultation.  
Douglas V. Stoehr practices personal injury law in Duncansville and Altoona, Pennsylvania. He serves clients throughout western and central Pennsylvania, including Duncansville, Hollidaysburg, Altoona, Huntingdon, State College, Johnstown, Clearfield, Tyrone, Ebensburg, Northern Cambria, Portage, Windber, Carrolltown, Gallitzin, Saxton, Bellefonte, Centre Hall, Pine Grove Mills, Warriors Mark, Spruce Creek, Roaring Spring, Bellwood, Claysburg, Blue Knob, Lewistown, Mount Union, Belleville, McConnellsburg, Breezewood, Williamsburg, Windber, Punxsutawney Martinsburg, Somerset, Philipsburg, Everett, Williamsport, Cumberland, Oakland, Indiana, St. Mary's, Blair County, Cambria County, Huntingdon County, Clearfield County, Mifflin County, Jefferson County, Huntington County, Centre County, Bedford County, Somerset County and Fulton County.

Throwback Thursday: Elder Abuse Nationwide

In our second week, it's Throwback Thursday on our blog!  Take some time to read one of our most popular blogs form several years ago.  It highlights the important issue of elder abuse on the national scale!  Please read the original article below:

Video Cameras in Nursing Homes? PA Laws Are Currently Unclear

What is your opinion?  Do security cameras in nursing homes work to help or harm residents that are under watch?  One recent article on PublicSource.com, a website devoted to Pennsylvania news, took a look at this issue.  According to their report, some PA seniors are currently unable to use video cameras as a way to connect with the outside world.  According to some nursing home owners and staff, they feel that cameras may intrude upon the privacy of other residents and the employees.  However, this also deprives residents of a way to maintain contact with friends and family outside of their room through the use of videochatting and other similar media activities.  This is complicated by the fact that Pennsylvania does not have clear video surveillance laws for nursing home and assisted living facilities.  As stated in the article, " Pennsylvania doesn't have regulations pertaining to cameras in nursing homes. A state wiretapping statute forbids audio recording without the consent of all parties; video is fine, though. Federal guidelines prioritize residents' rights, but there are conflicting interpretations."  This creates a sticky situation for family and friends of loved ones in nursing homes who not only want them to be able to connect with the outside world, but also know that they are being watched for instances of abuse and neglect.  What are your thoughts? 

A Young Man's Commentary on PA's Elder Abuse Problem

A recent commentary piece by a contributor to NewsWorks.org highlighted one man's experience having a grandmother who worked for nursing homes and assisted living facilities in eastern PA.  Within the commentary, the man describes his grandmother's work in a high-end nursing home, and how well the residents were treated.  He also reported that these instances are not always the norm, as about 20% of nursing home residents report abuse or neglect each year.  This is most likely a gross underestimate, as many seniors appear to be hesitant to report experiences of abuse or neglect.  Additionally, many seniors suffer from dementia and are unable to report any ill treatment. 
PA is among the states that should be the most concerned about how our seniors are being treated.  We are the state with the fourth highest percentage of elderly citizens over 85, and our state's nursing homes and assisted living facilities take care of over 130,000 seniors.   Please take a moment and read the entire article from Newsworks.org to get an idea of one man's battle against elder abuse how to inform change in our state.
Elder abuse can come in many forms, not just physical abuse.  Other, equally as damaging forms, of elder abuse can occur in settings such as nursing homes or hospitals.  Mental and psychological abuse, as well as financial and sexual abuse occur all too often to the elderly population.  If you feel that a loved one has been a victim of elder abuse, please contact Attorney Doug Stoehr to set up a free consultation.  Attorney Stoehr has experience and knowledge pertaining to elder abuse legal claims, and will work hard to fight for the rights of your family or friend.

Dauphin County Is Raising Awareness About Elder Abuse

In the Harrisburg area, a lead detective has been commissioned whose sole job is to investigate elder abuse cases.  The new detective was formerly a police officer in State College and also supervised the area's Department of Aging.  Dauphin County has an excellent reputation across the state for their Elder Abuse Task Force, in which there were 450 reported elder abuse cases last year.  This represents over a 150% increase in reports over the past ten years.  

Avoiding Slip-And-Fall Accidents for Elderly Residents

In the winter months, the episodes of outdoor slip-and-fall injuries tend to increase.  This is especially true this year, given the heightened amount of snow, ice, and cold conditions that our area of Pennsylvania has seen.  This can be especially dangerous for Pennsylvania's significant elderly population.  Older residents often have osteoporosis, which may lead them to break or fracture a bone when they fall, due to the weakened bone structure.
An Erie, PA area website has posted some tips for its elderly residents to help decrease the incidences of slip-and-fall accidents for older Pennsylvanians.  Some of the tips found on their website, GoErie.com, can be found here:
  • People with osteoporosis should be especially diligent about taking supplements, such as vitamin D and calcium, in order to increase bone strength and density.
  • Do some balance exercises daily.
  • Wear proper footwear when heading outside.  Wearing slippers or shoes with not enough tread may increase your likelihood of falling and seriously injuring yourself.
  • Consider buying over-shoe inserts that attach to the bottom of your shoes to give you more traction outside.
  • Keep your walkways completely clear of snow and ice. The use of rock salt and/or sand may help with that goal.
If you have slipped and fallen on the property of another, you may be entitled to compensation for medical bills and potential pain and suffering.  This may include cases where sidewalks were improperly maintained due to the winter weather, such as failure to remove snow and ice.   Attorney Doug Stoehr takes cases for clients who have sustained slip-and-fall injuries due to the fault or negligence of another.  For more information on his Altoona, PA area practice, please visit his website at http://www.stoehrlaw.com or call his firm at 814-946-4100.
To read more about the GoErie.com article, please click here.
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