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A New York Nursing Home resident died of his injuries after being beaten by another resident several days ago

A fight between residents in a NYC nursing home lead to the death of one of them. Heraldo Gonzalds 56, a resident of the New Gloria’s Manor Home for Adults, in Belle Arbor, Queens, New York was beaten so severely by 54 year old Bienvenido Cruz, another resident, that he was transferred to a hospital and died of his injuries several days after the fight. (see New York Daily News)

New York Nursing home staff do not seem to be prepared to handle cases of residents being abused by other residents. A few months ago in a previous blog we wrote about another fight in a Queens nursing home that also ended with the death of one of the patients.

With a growing number of the older population suffering from Alzheimer, dementia or traumatic stress disorder, residents of nursing homes can be at risk of other residents violence. It is very difficult to know exactly the extend of this type of abuse because only fights resulting in severe injury or death are reported.

A recent study from the School of Nursing, Arkansas State University, Jonesboro, Arkansas, looks at the different triggers of resident to resident violence in nursing homes and identify that two categories of triggers emerged from the study: active and passive. Active triggers involved the actions of other residents that were intrusive in nature, such as wandering into a residents’ personal space, taking a resident’s belongings, and so forth. Passive triggers did not involve the actions of residents but related to the internal and external environment of the residents. Examples were factors such as boredom, competition for attention and communication difficulties. Results indicate that there are factors, including unmet needs within the nursing home environment that may be identified and altered to prevent violence between residents.