Can a nurse who doesn't report elder abuse lose her license?

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My parents ( 97 and95) still live in their home with only the help and care of my sister and I. Once their phone ringer didn't work and when we couldn't get in touch with them we called the police to do a wellness check. My sister and I don't live nearby but take turns going and helping them or a regular basis. My son's girlfriend is a nurse in a rehab facility an hour away. Of course we were worried for their safety which she knew about but she said she wouldn't hesitate to report elder abuse if this or another incident involving the police calling on them was to happen.She said she talked to a social worker who told her if she "knew" about this and didn't report it that she could lose her nursing license(which is her livelihood) Is this true? She insists that they belong in a nursing home, but we can't afford it and the fact that it is both of them makes things complicated. She is an alarmist and very outspoken which concerns my sister and I that she will complicate things even more, setting things in motion ( that we won't know how to handle or that we can't afford).

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At their advanced age NH may be ideal, but if they can feed and care for themselves, with some assistance as you provide, they are not "abused". If miss buttinsky is compelled to make false accusations, I hope son wakes up and does not make her a permanent addition to the family. Sorry, but anyone who threatens me would not be welcome in my family. Cut her off from info, she does not need to know what is going on.
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I'm confused about what abuse occurred in this case. Was it simply that no one in the family went to check on them? Did the police find them in an unsafe environment or filthy conditions? If so, then the police would have made a report to the elder services in your town. So this girlfriend is just mouthing off, as far as I can discern. Yes, nurses should make a report if they suspect abuse, but if the police didn't see anything that would constitute criminal neglect or abuse, she should get her nose out of your business.
You don't state what health or mobility issues they have and many 90+ people can live perfectly well by themselves. If your parents are having problems, I would look into getting them into a nursing home with the help of Medicaid. You and your sister wouldn't be responsible for the expenses if they are eligible for Medicaid. If they stay at home,see about hiring someone to clean, mop, change light bulbs, etc. once or twice a week for a couple of hours. My city has a group called Project Compassion with volunteers who visit nursing homes and private homes to just be companions for a few hours. Find out what is available.
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I meant to finish this. I'm sorry you're facing a situation like this. vegaslady has a good suggestion for you to look into a nursing home, maybe using Medicaid.
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Your question made me curious, as I'm a nurse and I should know the answer. I found this in my state's mandate laws ---- Mandated reporters are required to report suspected child abuse or maltreatment when, in their professional capacity, they are presented with reasonable cause to suspect child abuse or maltreatment.
Elder abuse is NOT covered in 5 states, including mine. Also, the words, in their professional capacity, are most likely included in most state's mandates. I am only guessing at that. Can you imagine having to go through life as a nurse and have to report everything you hear about, think happened and assume?
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I'm not sure if the laws are the same for APS and Child Protective Services, but people such as nurses are mandated reporters. They do not have to witness the abuse occurring, but if they suspect abuse (such bruises, burns etc) they must report this and cannot do that anonymously. Non-mandated reporters can be anonymous. The victim would not have to be a mandated reporter's patient for the requirement to report the abuse to be in play. You don't get arrested for making reports even if the investigation does not find actual abuse. Have you actually looked into paying for nursing home care, maybe using Medicaid?
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Son's girlfriend can call APS anonymously if she's that much of a buttinsky.
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I think she's trying to strong-arm you into following her advice. I'm certain it is true that if a nurse knew or had reason to suspect that her patient was being abused or neglected by caregivers, she would have a professional duty to report it on pain of losing her licence; but your parents are not her patients, nor is she professionally connected with them in any way, on either a paid or a voluntary basis - her duty to them is the same as that of any other citizen.

Of course, that doesn't mean she isn't right to be concerned about their welfare (I'm not for a moment suggesting that you're not, too), and their future care. If money weren't the problem, would you agree that they should be together in a nursing home? If so, start looking at their options now. It isn't you or your sister whose finances matter, it's your parents. Get advice from local agencies before there's a crisis that a courtesy visit from the police won't solve.
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I'm a little lost. What was the abuse that she actually witnessed? A nurse is responsible for patients IN HER CARE, but that does not seem to be the case. She must report abuse she ACTUALLY WITNESSED "Knew" means she has first hand knowledge, not hearsay in a family conversation. Let her file a report and when they find out she is a sniping outsider they can arrest her for filing a false report and you can sue the pants off her. Her medical opinion means squat, it is up to the patients' doctors and family to agree on care.
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