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Most people take for granted the security in facility care due to all of the staff members, visitors and security guards that are visible when you visit. This is a deadly assumption. Even with the most sophisticated equipment and security guards, your elderly loved ones are only as secure as the equipment and staff are attentive.

During nights, weekends and Holidays, there may be as many as 30 residents to every one staff person.

Also, there are many cases where equipment has either malfunctioned or was not plugged in. Many incidents and deaths have occurred when the security doors were left unlocked and the elderly left alone and unmonitored.


One of the most tragic current incidents happening in elder care today is the elderly wondering away from their home and incurring death as a result. As is with one home, two years earlier, an elderly man wondered away and was killed as a result. Recently, this same home had a 79 year old man wonder away and as a result was struck and killed by a truck. Although this home was fined over $40,000.00 and cited multiple times for neglect and abuse over the years, it was allowed to continue to operate. As a result of the recent death, the home was cited and closed down by a judge, however, the owner of the home, an attorney, filed papers to keep the home open and the State reversed its decision to close the home, even after a long history of neglect, abuse and death had been documented.

In another case, a very wealthy family had done an extensive background check on the home they put their mother in. The home had had no incidents filed against them, it was very expensive, (over $5,000.00 per month), very elegant, very clean, fully staffed by the best trained possible, a very active home with plenty of activities for the residents, many programs in place for optimum health and a state of the art security system. As her son said, “it is unfortunate because with all of our effort to find the best home, we could never have planned for this unfortunate incident”, his mother, an 89 year old women, walked past an unplugged monitor, out an unlocked security door, then twelve feet away, she walked through an unlocked security gate and just two feet the other side of the security gate, drown in only 18” inches of water.


In another case, although staff was present during visitation by the family from out of town, on unannounced visits, the 74 year old woman was in soiled clothing, nails were uncut and growing in the skin and she was left to wonder about alone even though she had Alzheimer Disease. She was harassed by other male residents and in the end left alone and died as a result of falling and sustaining a severe head injury resulting in lacerations to the face. The family was not notified until three days later and told she had had an accident that had just taken place... An eye witness, (volunteer), said the facts the family had been given by the facility, were inaccurate, and that she had been left alone and fallen three days earlier, before the family was notified.


When it comes to security, the equipment and security personnel are only a fraction of what could go wrong in securing your elderly loved one. There are staff personnel, leaving doors ajar with objects so the door will remain open for smoke breaks, staff conducting unofficial business while on duty, understaffed shifts, other residents, visitors and or intruders with no ties to the facility or home at all, and just shear lack of observation regarding the surroundings of the staff and security personnel.


Regardless of the security protocol, The Protective Service Agency will verify the security measures and confirm they are in place with every visit the PSA Agent makes on your behalf. We will inquire if there have been any security breaches between our visits and check to see if the security equipment and personnel are in order.


When a PSA Agent is conducting his reports for your personal secured PSA file on your elderly loved one, he/she will also be observing the surroundings, outside and inside the residents. The Agent will look for suspicious characters lingering where they shouldn't, pay attention to staff behavior and activities, the attentiveness of the front desk, sign in and sign out of guest, other residents’ behavior and activities as well as security equipment and personnel.


This is one of the many benefits to having a Protective Service Agent present with their credentials monitoring and documenting all of these critical areas of security. Although we are not present 24/7, the staff and security personnel will be quite aware of PSA presence and documentation, as well, the questions they will be asked when a PSA Agent is on the premises.


PSA has other measures to increase security for your elderly loved one when a PSA Agent is not present. (See Certificate of Protection, Reporting and Observation in the menu to the left).


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