All too often, there are elderly people in nursing homes that are undermonitored for far too long. This is a dangerous and concerning issue for residents and their families. Regular checks of vital signs and other check-ins provide an opportunity to identify new concerns, ensure proper management of chronic conditions, and provide some social interaction for bed-bound residents.
At the same time, many residents need help with simple tasks, including bathing and changing clothes.
Nursing home administrators are notorious for refusing to pay for an adequate amount of well-trained, certified staff to ensure residents receive the care and monitoring they need. While labor budgets are generally very tight, it pays to have the skilled staff you need when you need them.
Residents Are Not Monitored as Often as You Assume
When a loved one moves into a skilled nursing facility, you likely assume “around-the-clock care” means they will see a nurse several times a day, interact with a certified nursing assistant (CNA) regularly, and have someone available quickly when they push the call button.
However, the nurse may only interact with residents to address a specific need or to dispense medications. The CNA may take vitals, but this is often just a routine interaction. Other staff may help with activities of daily living, but these may not happen every day.
Lack of Monitoring Can Lead to Nursing Home Neglect
When nursing home residents do not get the monitoring and care necessary, the result may be neglect. One study showed that more than 20 percent of all nursing home residents who participated in the survey suffered neglect during the previous year.
Those who have a functional impairment and need assistance with activities of daily living were the most at risk.
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Understaffed and Mismanaged Nursing Homes Play a Role
In most cases, the reason residents do not get the monitoring they need and deserve is because the facility administration does not want to pay to staff the facility properly for the number of residents. In the United States, most nursing homes are not adequately staffed or are staffed with undertrained workers.
Skilled Workers’ Wages Remain Low
Nurses in long-term care facilities do not get top pay. Lower-level managers struggle to meet strict staffing budgets, while the administrators and owners of the company continue to get richer. Nurses leave as quickly as they can to get a higher-paying job in a clinic, doctor’s office, hospital, or other location. Competition for skilled workers, including both CNAs and LPNs, is high, but nursing home wages remain low.
Staff Members Lack Essential Training
While nursing home administrators seem to think hiring someone who does not have the required skill set or certification is better than having no one at all, it leads to CNAs and other staff being forced to perform tasks that are above their level of training.
Caregivers and Staff Are Overworked
Many workers in nursing homes have high dissatisfaction with their jobs because of understaffing and undertrained workers. They are overworked or forced to try to do their jobs without adequate resources, time, or training.
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Nursing Home Staffing Issues Directly Affect Resident Health and Happiness
Nursing home staffing concerns can affect nursing home residents in many ways. This includes:
- Getting regular, high-quality, nutritional meals and snacks.
- Facility cleanliness and services such as changing sheets and taking out garbage.
- Access to nurses and normal health care services for chronic illness.
- Hygiene and personal care assistance.
- Property and facility safety and security.
- Access to medication and treatment as prescribed.
- Security within the facility, specifically of their personal belongings.
- Increased vulnerability to abusers.
All of these issues can contribute to nursing home neglect, which can be serious and cause lasting health complications. Residents or their families may be able to take legal action against the nursing home if neglect causes them to suffer injuries, and they require medical attention.
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A Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Attorney Can Help You
If your loved one sustained injuries due to a lack of monitoring in a nursing home or another type of skilled care facility, you may be able to help them pursue a nursing home neglect case. The nursing home abuse and neglect lawyers from Pintas & Mullins Law Firm offer free case reviews and consultations to victims and their families nationwide.
If our team believes you have a strong nursing home neglect case, we can take legal action for your family on a contingency fee basis. You pay nothing out of pocket, and we only get our fee if we recover a payout in your case.
Call us today at (800) 842-6336 to get started with a free evaluation of your case.