Falls in Nursing Homes
Respected Chicago Nursing Home Abuse Attorneys Serving Clients Nationwide
Nursing home residents are at an extremely high risk for falls. The United States Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) estimates that over 1,800 seniors living in nursing homes die each year due to fall-related injuries. Those who survive such accidents are often left with debilitating injuries, such as bone fractures and head injuries. Falls in nursing homes are often critical signs of nursing home negligence.
If you or someone you love is in a nursing home and is suffering from injuries due to a fall, get in touch with Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today. Our award-winning Chicago nursing home injury lawyers travel to represent clients throughout the United States. We have 50+ years collective experience and have recovered millions in our 10,000+ cases. Call us today at (800) 794-0444.
Nursing Home Falls Can Cause Serious Injuries
Falls occur for many reasons in nursing homes. Even residents who require the consistent care of nursing home facilities are already prone to such accidents, because of various medical conditions, age, psychological trauma, or physical limitations. Medications prescribed to seniors are typically used to combat serious illnesses such as cancer and heart disease, and many of them have serious side effects.
A few prescription drug side effects that may contribute to falls include:
- Impaired visions
- Loss of muscle control
Falls Can Be a Sign of Nursing Home Abuse / Negligence
Statistics on nursing home abuse reveal that those aged 65 and older are four times more likely to suffer a fatal fall in nursing homes than those that do not live in such facilities. However, it is the essential function of nursing homes to ensure the complete safety of residents, and employees need to take all measures necessary to prevent falls from happening.
Nursing home employees are required by law to:
- Implement proper precautions
- Maintain the cleanliness and safety of the facilities and grounds
- Keep a watchful eye on residents.
When residents enter nursing homes, an assessment must be made in order to determine each individual's risk for falls and to implement the necessary precautions to prevent this. Such measures include the use of canes or wheelchairs, bed rails, appropriate footwear, and all other forms of personal safety.
When Nursing Home Neglect Happens to You or Your Loved One
There are two types of neglect or abuse by nursing home staff in relation to falls:
- The abuse/neglect that causes or contributes to the resident's fall
- The abuse/neglect of failure to effectively assist and report a fall that has already occurred
An alarming number of falls in nursing homes go unreported, because the resident is either seemingly unharmed, or the fall was in some way unavoidable. Often, however, repeated falls are an important sign of nursing home negligence. This type of occurrence should not be overlooked.
Signs of such nursing home neglect include bruising, cuts, or sores. Residents may become fearful of mobile activities, such as going for walks around the grounds or even getting out of bed. Look for environmental hazards, such as wet or slippery floors, inadequate lighting, or improper wheelchair maintenance.
Preventing Nursing Home Falls
During initial admittance into a nursing home, make sure every precaution is taken on behalf of you or your loved one's individual needs.
This may include:
- Proper bed height, shoe attire, bathroom installations, and constant assistance while mobile.
- Take note of any new prescriptions; side effects of new medications are worst during the three days following any changes in drug intake.
- Residents may benefit from hip pads, which would protect bones from fracture if a fall does occur.
- Exercise and training programs for residents have proven beneficial. These routines improve balance, muscle density, strength, and walking ability.
- Vitamin D supplements are still being studied for usefulness in fall intervention, but may be worth employing if extreme risk is present.
Take notice of how nursing home staff assists those while walking. Are they attentive and careful, or dismissive and aloof? Observe whether or not sensors are used in the resident rooms to notify of any emergency or request for aid. If you notice any suspicious behavior, do not hesitate to contact a Chicago nursing home injury attorney from our firm-we proudly represent clients throughout the United States.
You Are Not Alone-Turn to Pintas & Mullins Law Firm Today
Our team of accomplished nursing home abuse lawyers in Illinois has extensive experience in negligence and abuse cases. If you or a loved one is suffering from any type of nursing home injury, contact our office today for a free consultation. Our firm is located in Chicago, Illinois, but we handle cases in all 50 states and can travel to you.
Call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm at (800) 794-0444 to learn more in a no-charge consultation.