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Elder care law involves the legal practice of protecting the elderly under various issues that they face, particularly in the way in which they are cared for. The legislation that pertains to the elderly and the care that they receive from the government and other private organizations is covered under elder care law, which generally deals with those who are over the age of 65.
The method in which the elderly are cared for, how they are treated by medical insurers, and how they are enforced to enter certain agreements are covered under the legislation of elder care law. Depending on what specific law may have been broken under elder care law, there may be legislation and litigation issues that may arise as a result of a violation of one of these laws, which can carry a civil or criminal punishment to the guilty party.
Any type of care that is specifically geared towards the elderly is known as elder care. There are many levels on which elder care may be carried out, including the following:
- Live-in facilities for elders with special needs
- Live-in facilities for elders requiring constant medical supervision
- Day nurses who visit an elderly person in their own home for a few hours per day
There are many variations in which elderly care may be carried out, depending on the person’s specific needs and their resources. A high level of care for these seniors is ensured through the intensive training that health care workers receive who will be specifically looking after and caring for elders in a variety of settings.
Elder care can also include helping older patients move around, getting groceries, keeping their homes tidy, picking up the mail, paying bills, and other chores and errands that need to be done that the elder patient is physically unable to do on his or her own. Part of this care not only involves physically caring for the person, but also providing some form of companionship for the elderly, which is also an important aspect of elder care.
On more intense and specific levels of elder care, more specific and serious health issues can be targeted. For example, an elder patient who has suffered a stroke, broken hip, memory loss or other specific injury or illness can be cared for to specifically deal with these particular issues that each elder faces. These patients will have specific medications and treatments that will be targeted at alleviating the symptoms of the patient’s illness or disease. These patients will often require assistance in administering prescribed medication, or help with bathing. Anything that improves the quality of life for the patient falls under the umbrella of elder care.
Specific homes and facilities are offered to seniors who may need more full-time medical supervision. These institutions are referred to as assisted living facilities, which are specifically geared towards the elderly. Depending on the patient’s needs and aliments, the specific type of care provided to each elder patient will vary. Some patients simply require some assistance to help improve a sense of independence, while others who are bedridden or seriously injured may require more serious assistance.
Elder Care Law and Legislation
Each state in the US will have its own elder care laws and legislation governing the care of the elderly. Even though some topics related to elder care may be consistent from one state to the next and general in nature, many laws are specific to the particular state. Lawyers who specialize in elder care law must be proficient in both the general elder care laws, as well as the more specific laws pertinent to the state in which they work.
Elder abuse is a common occurrence in the US, in which elders are often the victim of harassment and physical or verbal abuse from their caregivers. Elder care law governs these illegal actions, and enforces punishment upon those who have been proven guilty of elder abuse in health care facilities or in-house care. Seniors who are in particularly compromising physical and mental condition are considerably vulnerable to abuse by others, particularly those who are caring for them for much of their lives.
Elders can also be taken advantage of financially. There have many incidents in the US where elderly individuals were tricked out of their finances by individuals who sought to rob these elderly based on their vulnerable physical and mental state. Elder care law helps to protect the elderly from these types of instances, and enforces legal action against those who are guilty of the crime.
Elderly individuals who require physical and mental care need to be taken care of and protected under the law from those who seek to abuse and take advantage of them. Elder care law works to protect these elders that are much more vulnerable than able-bodies younger people. Regulations set forth under elder care law enforce the fair and adequate treatment of the elderly, as well as bringing justice to those who fall victims to elder abuse under the care of a health care professional or facility.