Past and present institutions (e.g., state and public hospitals, assisted living facilities, public nursing homes) have struggled with structural issues tied to patient care and neglect, which often manifests in the form of fracture trauma, and may explain why institutionalized individuals are at higher risk for this injury. Six hundred individuals from the Robert J. Terry Anatomical Collection born between 1822–1877 were examined to investigate hip fracture prevalence. Analysis of associated records and documentary data, including death, morgue, and census records, revealed that 36.3% (n = 218) of these individuals died in institutions such as the St. Louis State Hospital, City Infirmary, and Missouri State Hospital No. 4. Of the institutionalized individuals, 4.3% had evidence of hip fracture, significantly higher than the non-institutionalized (2.3%). Records revealed that many hip fractures were suffered around the time of death in state hospitals and were preventable, resulting from structural issues tied to understaffing and underfunding. Forensic and clinical literature, as well as current news media, indicate that structural violence in the forms of underfunding and understaffing continues to manifest as hip fractures harming institutionalized individuals today. This paper demonstrates how an anthropological perspective using paleopathological analysis sheds light on the chronicity and time depth of this issue, with the aim of driving public policy to entrench the equitable care of institutionalized people as a human right.