The abuse and neglect of the elderly is one of the fastest growing crimes in the US, targeting one of its most vulnerable populations.

Pat died for no reason ... people got to know what these nursing homes consist of. They don't care ... they're there for a paycheck.

Nora Manning, wife of a victim of poor elderly care

In long-term care facilities, cases of abuse and neglect are largely out of view and under-reported.

As a result, countless elderly victims are suffering alone in silence.

The US government figures show that within one year, over $5bn elderly went to substandard care.

And according to a study, many nursing homes reported staffing levels are insufficient to provide adequate care, including some of the largest profitable chains in the US.

Enforcement agencies say although the business of elderly care is growing, they are limited by new budget cuts.

Fault Lines investigates how problems of government oversight and corporate accountability persist in many states, and how poorly-rated facilities continue to operate without penalties despite repeated offences.

Fault Lines can be seen on Al Jazeera English each week at the following times GMT: Wednesday: 2230; Thursday: 0930; Friday: 0330; Saturday: 1630.

Watch more Fault Lines