Nursing Home Failure to Prevent Falls

Both state and federal laws require that nursing homes maintain certain standards in regard to the care and safety of their residents. However, these standards are not always adhered to, which can have unfortunate consequences for residents. When a nursing home resident at risk for falling goes unmonitored, it's usually only a matter of time before a fall takes place, which can result in severe injuries, hospitalization, or even death.

Nursing home residents are at a high risk of falls due to many factors. With age comes a decrease in cognitive abilities, balance, and vision. A resident may also be on medication that can affect their ability to walk and balance themselves. After a fall it can be difficult for a nursing home resident to pick themselves up due to their injuries or muscle weakness which can lead to even more issues. Due to these factors nursing home residents need to be properly monitored to avoid preventable falls.

Common Causes of Unattended Falls in the Nursing Home
  • Understaffed nursing home: Employees in an understaffed nursing home often find that they are unable to provide enough quality care and supervision for every resident.
  • Untrained or undertrained staff: nursing home employees should be properly trained on how to monitor residents at all times, especially those at risk for falls and injuries.
  • Negligent employee behavior: employees can simply be negligent and not properly supervise residents.
Common Injuries Suffered in a Nursing Home Fall
  • Fractures
  • Head Trauma
  • Lacerations
  • Bruising
  • Internal Injuries

Failure to prevent preventable falls in a nursing home is a serious issue. Cases like this need to be reported. That is why each county in Pennsylvania has an Area Agency on Aging, which employs Case Workers and Ombudsmen. They investigate senior citizen neglect, especially in nursing home situations. If you suspect a nursing home failed to prevent a fall, contact your local aging office.

At Michael J. O'Connor & Associates we are ready to assist you, if necessary, in protecting the rights of your loved one. You can call or email us for a free consultation. Our toll free number is 1(800) 518-4LAW. You can also fill out a contact form on our website and someone will get back to you to answer your questions and address your concerns.

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