“Abuse” Defined by Statute
Pursuant to Minnesota Statute 626.5772, Subd. 2., abuse is defined as: “abuse” (a) An act against a vulnerable adult that constitutes a violation of, an attempt to violate, or aiding and abetting a violation of:
(1) assault in the first through fifth degrees as defined in sections 609.221 to 609.224;
(2) the use of drugs to injure or facilitate crime as defined in section 609.235;
(3) the solicitation, inducement, and promotion of prostitution as defined in section 609.322; and
(4) criminal sexual conduct in the first through fifth degrees as defined in sections 609.342 to 609.3451.
A violation includes any action that meets the elements of the crime, regardless of whether there is a criminal proceeding or conviction.
(b) Conduct which is not an accident or therapeutic conduct as defined in this section, which produces or could reasonably be expected to produce physical pain or injury or emotional distress including, but not limited to, the following:
(1) hitting, slapping, kicking, pinching, biting, or corporal punishment of a vulnerable adult;
(2) use of repeated or malicious oral, written, or gestured language toward a vulnerable adult or the treatment of a vulnerable adult which would be considered by a reasonable person to be disparaging, derogatory, humiliating, harassing, or threatening;
(3) use of any aversive or deprivation procedure, unreasonable confinement, or involuntary seclusion, including the forced separation of the vulnerable adult from other persons against the will of the vulnerable adult or the legal representative of the vulnerable adult; and
(4) use of any aversive or deprivation procedures for persons with developmental disabilities or related conditions not authorized under section 245.825.
(c) Any sexual contact or penetration as defined in section 609.341, between a facility staff person or a person providing services in the facility and a resident, patient, or client of that facility.
(d) The act of forcing, compelling, coercing, or enticing a vulnerable adult against the vulnerable adult’s will to perform services for the advantage of another.
(e) For purposes of this section, a vulnerable adult is not abused for the sole reason that the vulnerable adult or a person with authority to make health care decisions for the vulnerable adult under sections 144.651, 144A.44, chapter 145B, 145C or 252A, or section 253B.03 or 524.5-313, refuses consent or withdraws consent, consistent with that authority and within the boundary of reasonable medical practice, to any therapeutic conduct, including any care, service, or procedure to diagnose, maintain, or treat the physical or mental condition of the vulnerable adult or, where permitted under law, to provide nutrition and hydration parenterally or through intubation. This paragraph does not enlarge or diminish rights otherwise held under law by:
(1) a vulnerable adult or a person acting on behalf of a vulnerable adult, including an involved family member, to consent to or refuse consent for therapeutic conduct; or
(2) a caregiver to offer or provide or refuse to offer or provide therapeutic conduct.
(f) For purposes of this section, a vulnerable adult is not abused for the sole reason that the vulnerable adult, a person with authority to make health care decisions for the vulnerable adult, or a caregiver in good faith selects and depends upon spiritual means or prayer for treatment or care of disease or remedial care of the vulnerable adult in lieu of medical care, provided that this is consistent with the prior practice or belief of the vulnerable adult or with the expressed intentions of the vulnerable adult.
(g) For purposes of this section, a vulnerable adult is not abused for the sole reason that the vulnerable adult, who is not impaired in judgment or capacity by mental or emotional dysfunction or undue influence, engages in consensual sexual contact with:
(1) a person, including a facility staff person, when a consensual sexual personal relationship existed prior to the caregiving relationship; or
(2) a personal care attendant, regardless of whether the consensual sexual personal relationship existed prior to the caregiving relationship.
If you have any questions about reporting concerns or any type of nursing home abuse or neglect call Attorney Kenneth LaBore for a free consultation at 612-743-9048 or by email at KLaBore@MNnursinghomeneglect.com.