CLEVELAND ATTORNEYS REPRESENTING ELDERLY VICTIMS OF FALL AND FRACTURE INJURIES IN NURSING HOMES
Nursing Home Injury Lawyers Serving Canton, Akron, Toledo, Cleveland, Youngstown and all Ohio Communities
Nursing home falls, fractures, bruises, and open wounds – is there any good explanation for these injuries in a care facility?
When a resident enters a nursing home, assisted living, senior-care facility, or home-care, the administration is required to perform an evaluation, which identifies the areas where the individual is at risk. It then becomes the responsibility of the administration to develop an appropriate treatment plan and see that it is carried out to counteract any of the potential risks.
It is the responsibility of the nursing home to prevent injuries
Measures to protect nursing home patients need to be carefully tailored to provide safety with dignity. Some examples are given below:
- Transfer and lift falls commonly result when a single person tries to assist a resident, rather than calling for help. Mechanical or hydraulic lifts and slings, such as a Hoyer lift, will reduce the likelihood of an elderly resident falling during transfer from bed to wheelchair, or wheelchair to bath. It is important that these handicap lifts be used correctly, or the patient may fall out of the straps. Even then it may still be necessary to have two staff members handle this patient transfer procedure.
- Patients, including those who use walkers and wheelchairs, should not be lifted under the arms. A gait belt should be used in cramped spaces.
- A patient taking certain medications may develop balance problems and should be carefully monitored to prevent falls.
- Careful training and charting procedures protect residents from medication errors.
- A patient with dementia or Alzheimer’s may need to have a bed placed at floor level to prevent a fall if the patient gets out of bed without assistance. The patient may need to be in a locked or restricted area to prevent wandering off the grounds.
- A patient with esophageal reflux or dysphagia (a swallowing disorder) may need to have a carefully controlled diet and supervision during meals to prevent choking, aspiration, and pneumonia.
- A patient with a pattern of balance problems or minor falls needs to be protected from a serious fall that causes catastrophic or fatal injury.
- A patient who, for physical or emotional reasons, shows signs of malnutrition or dehydration needs to be carefully monitored for weight loss and to prevent decubitus ulcers (bedsores) from forming.
- A patient with limited movement should be turned, placed on special air mattresses, and carefully monitored to prevent the development of bedsores.
- A resident with a history of sexual offenses must be isolated from vulnerable patients.
- Colored patient bracelets can be used to call any staff member’s attention to a certain patient risk, such as falling.
Falls, fractures, bruises, and fearfulness – Nursing Home neglect or abuse?
Not every accidental injury is the result of neglect or abuse, and some elderly patients make unfounded accusations against staff and residents. However, it is important that these situations be carefully investigated. If you suspect that a serious nursing home injury is the result of negligence on the part of the institution please call: 216 696-1080 or e-mail our Cleveland office. A lawyer with experience in nursing home injury cases will explain how to proceed.
Our attorneys represent nursing home residents in Ohio communities including Cleveland, Lorain, Akron, Canton, Painesville, Columbus, Cincinnati, Toledo, Dayton, Youngstown, and Parma in injury claims and lawsuits. We are also long-standing members of the American Association for Justice, and as such, we are connected to a nationwide network of attorneys. Serving Cleveland, Akron, Canton, Youngstown, Toledo and all Ohio Communities.