Nursing homes are meant to give their all when taking care of their elderly, often sick patients. When they fail to do so and commit egregious (or outright abusive) errors, they need to be held responsible. There are six nursing home errors, in particular, that are known to lead to serious legal trouble:
1. Lack of Fall Prevention Efforts
Falls and other slip accidents in nursing homes are a leading cause of injury (and even death). These falls are all the more devastating due to the advanced age of the patients that suffer from them. For this reason, fall and slip prevention must be a top priority of every nursing home across America. If a nursing home fails to take this responsibility seriously, it can be held legally responsible for the injuries (and deaths) that they cause. If you or a loved one have been harmed by a lack of fall prevention efforts at a nursing home, you should use nursinghomelawcenter.org to discover your next steps. You deserve justice, after all.
2. Lack of Round-the-Clock Care
When an elderly patient enters into a nursing home’s care, it’s often due to a health issue that requires them to have access to round-the-clock care. Nursing homes understand this and often advertise their services based on their ability to provide 24/7 nursing home staff access and other such amenities. If a patient in a nursing home is prevented from accessing round-the-clock care, their health (and their life) is put into direct peril. In the most tragic cases, this can lead to patients dying from easily preventable health problems. For this reason, many nursing home abuse lawsuits revolve around nursing homes that cut corners regarding their ability to provide reasonable care access.
3. Lack of Bedsore Prevention Efforts
Bedsores may seem like a simple nuisance if you’ve never had one, but they are much more than that in reality. Not only are they incredibly painful, but they can lead to sores and infection issues that can become life-threatening overnight. Due to this, nursing home staff must be trained to help bedridden patients move from time to time, so that they do not develop bedsores. In moments when bedsores do happen, the staff must be vigilant about curing and treating them. If improper bedsore prevention and treatment is happening behind the scenes at a nursing home, that home can be held legally liable for the damage and suffering that they’re causing to their patients.
4. Lack of Financial Protection
Tragically, elderly nursing home patients experience financial abuse at a disgustingly high rate. Because they are less on top of their money and financial resources, and because aspects of their finances are often entrusted to nursing home staff members, they become easy prey for predatory staff members. Whether a nursing home staff member is taking money from their accounts, or pressuring a patient into giving valuable gifts to them, these actions are defined as financial abuse and can lead to serious legal jeopardy. If you’ve noticed your elderly loved one having financial issues during their stay in a nursing home, you should sound the alarm sooner rather than later. Doing so will help you bring their abuser to justice.
5. Lack of Proper Abuse Reporting Systems
Even if a nursing home is run in a fully compassionate, professional fashion, instances of abuse (or abusive staff members) are bound to happen at some point. Because of this tragic fact, all nursing homes must have a concrete, accessible, and easy-to-use abuse reporting system in place. If a home fails to keep this option open for patients, or obstructs such a system’s functionality, they can find themselves in deep, deep legal jeopardy. Being a useful ally for your elderly nursing home patient loved one can help them feel more emboldened to report abuse when it happens.
6. Lack of Communal Care
Finally, a lack of proper communal care can severely affect the life quality of nursing home patients. Not only is communal care needed to keep them happy and healthy, but community-minded practices help to prevent abuse from occurring in the first place. The more bonded and empowered a nursing home patient community feels, the less likely it is for individual patients to fall victim to abuse, after all. In the tragic case where abuse does happen to your elderly loved one, a qualified, experienced nursing home abuse lawyer can help you navigate the aftermath and can help you put together a legal case if need be.