As the population of older Americans continues to increase, we have also experienced an increased awareness of issues that impact them, including the prevalence of elder abuse, neglect, and financial exploitation. States across the nation are scrambling to try and prevent, or at least combat, the problem of elder abuse, with varying success. According to a recently released study by Wallet Hub, North Dakota ranks 33rd when it comes to the state’s efforts at protecting its elder residents.
The Wallet Hub Study
Wallet Hub compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia based on 14 key indicators of elder-abuse protection in three overall categories – prevalence, resources, and protection. They then evaluated these dimensions using 14 relevant metrics. Each metric was scored on a 100-point scale, with 100 representing the “best protection against elder abuse.” The results were compiled into an overall ranking for elder abuse protection. Individual sub-category rankings were also provided for the top five and bottom five in each sub-category. The 14 metrics used in the study are as follows:
- Prevalence – Total 40 Points
- Share of Elder-Abuse, Gross-Neglect and Exploitation Complaints
- Resources – Total 30 Points
- Total Expenditures on Elder-Abuse Prevention per Resident Aged 65 & Older
- Total Expenditures on Legal-Assistance Development per Resident Aged 65 & Older
- Total Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program Funding per Resident Aged 65 & Older
- Protection – Total 30 Points
- Financial Elderly-Abuse Laws
- Eldercare Organizations & Services per Resident Aged 65 & Older
- Presence of Elder-Abuse Forensic Centers
- Presence of Elder Abuse Working Groups
- Certified Volunteer Ombudsmen per Resident Aged 65 & Older
- Frequency of Assisted-Living Facilities Inspections
- Quality of Nursing Homes
- Presence of Laws Allowing Surveillance Cams in Nursing Homes
- Presence of Elder Justice Task Forces
- Presence of Elder-Abuse Shelters
How Did North Dakota Rank?
North Dakota ranked 33rd out of the 50 states and D.C. with an overall score of 40.29 out of a possible 100. To provide perspective for that score, Massachusetts came in 1st with a score of 58.55 and New Jersey ranked last with a combined score of just 24.63. Within the three main categories, North Dakota scored highest in the “Resources” category, coming in 19th. In the “Prevelance” category Indiana ranked 29th and came in 40th in the “Protection” category.
Contact a Grand Forks Elder Law Attorneys
Please join us for an upcoming FREE seminar. If you have additional questions or concerns about elder law, contact a Grand Forks elder law attorney at German Law by calling 701-738-0060 to schedule an appointment.