The Star Tribune reported this week on a new report issued by one state’s health department which found that neglect led a nursing home resident to fall, ultimately causing her death. The department report offers a sad look at how poor care at a facility–often in violation of state and federal law–can be deadly.
A resident at the facility had a history of trying to get out of bed of her own. Her mental and physical vulnerabilities made this a fall risk, and so caregivers were well aware of their need to act prudently to prevent her from falling and hurting herself. However, regardless of this, at some point the senior fell and hurt herself.
It was only later that staff members noticed that she had head injuries which were indicative of some type of fall. She had a large bump on one side of her head and a smaller bump on the other side. A day after they were first noticed the resident complained about pain in her face. At that time staff members also noticed bruising around her neck. The following morning the woman would not get out of bed. She did not open her eyes and was not responsive to staff members.
The main issue was that it was only well after all of this was noticed by staff members that an actual registered nurse was informed of the situation. At that time the senior was sent to the hospital. The resident remained in the hospital for more than a week before she passed away from her injuries. The official death certificate lists the nursing home fall as the cause of her passing.
After investigating the situation the facility was recently held responsible for the incident, and several citations were issued. For one thing, the home was criticized for not properly monitoring the change in the resident’s condition and failing to inform medical personnel about the deterioration. It was an obvious error for the resident not to receive medical attention for days after the fall. Similarly, a citation was issued for the facility’s failure to have registered nurse for other staff members to call after hours.
It is perhaps not surprising that this facility is part of a larger group which owns several homes, including one in Illinois. Unfortunately, many long-term care facilities are owned and managed by larger businesses which often prioritize profits over patients. Lack of training, inadequate staffing, and similar problems are commonly found at these homes. Preventable accidents, like a nursing home fall, often result.
Illinois Nursing Home Falls & Wrongful Death
The team of attorneys at our firm are very familiar with cases like this one. Unfortunately, there are very often repeat patterns when it comes to nursing home neglect cases. Deadly falls are, like pressure sores, one of those details that come up again and again. These falls occur so often that it is worth repeating how they are often caused by neglect.
Consider contacting our firm for guidance if you suspect that a loved one many have been mistreated and harmed at a nursing home.
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