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Elder Abuse: A Hidden Epidemic

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March 21, 2017 Return to News & Events

Elder Abuse: A Hidden Epidemic

Expectations of growing old in a safe environment are simple expectations an aging population might hold, but the sad truth is that crimes against the elderly continue to grow and are often under-reported. Adam Almeida, President and CEO of states: “Caregiver background checks are an important tool that can be used to mitigate risk of elder abuse insomuch a complete and thorough background check can act as a deterrent to those with malfeasant intentions.”

As people age the risk of abuse grows and often the abuse comes from those hired to protect, assist, or help the elderly in everyday activities. Depictions of elder abuse brought forth by caregivers are rampant on the internet and stories populate nearly every news site.

Recently, in the Village of Oak Creek, Arizona, a caregiver was arrested for stealing from an elderly woman.

From (Feb. 22, 17):

…a 42-year-old caregiver of Village of Oak Creek, was arrested after the Yavapai County Sheriff’s office confirmed her as a suspect accused of stealing more than $100,000 from an elderly Sedona woman.

A family member of the legally blind 89-year-old victim contacted the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office last month to report concerns of caregiver theft. The caller indicated it appeared more than $100,000 had been stolen from the victim, according to a news release from YCSO. (1)

Abuse can sometimes have a greater impact than simple caregiver theft. An extreme situation occurred in Texas.

From (Feb. 21, 17)

Emily Springer, 96, died just four months after she was seriously injured in a vehicle crash. According to her family, a Visiting Angels caretaker responsible for Springer failed to properly strap her into the van, which caused her to fly out of her handicap seat and into the dashboard. … The caretaker involved was indicted for injury to an elderly person and is awaiting criminal trial. (2)

Adam Almeida, President and CEO of states: “An important deterrent in elder abuse by a caretaker is a thorough background check, one that includes a complete interview as well as a criminal background check of all individuals involved with the care of the elderly individual.”

Caregiver background checks often include Criminal Record History, DMV Records, Consumer Credit Reports, and National Criminal check among others.

Almeida states: “There are numerous public records one can review in order to get a picture of the background a caregiver might have. Background checks help verify claims made on resumes or during interviews. And, perhaps more importantly, a thorough background check may deter those with ill intentions.

Ultimately families of the elderly should demand any caregiver facility provide complete background history on caregivers and if a caregiver is hired by the family a complete background check should be conducted through a well-qualified third-party employment screening company. is a third-party background screening company that can provide compliant solutions for all screening requirements. From pre-employment to post-hire screening, as well as volunteer, caregiver and nanny checks, provides background screening services across a broad array of industries. From the smallest organization to the largest corporation, can fulfill every background screening requirement.




Civil trial case number: 2015-1557-5, District Court of McClennan County Texas

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