Falls in Nursing Homes – Unnecessarily Commonplace
There are many forms of elder abuse and neglect in nursing homes usually due to a shortage of well trained staff and a lack of management oversight. Many common forms of elder abuse in nursing homes and other elder care facilities are medication errors, urinary tract infection, pressure sore / bed sores, sexual abuse, infections and others. The most common form of abuse and neglect in nursing home I see in my practice is falls, most of which were preventable had the nursing home had enough competent staff and followed safety procedures for the residents including assessing the residents for fall risks, and taking appropriate fall interventions to prevent incidents from occurring. Many of the serious injuries due to falls in nursing homes are a result of head injury, hip fracture or some other serious internal injury.
It is essential that the nursing home have well trained nursing or physician staff available to assess and monitor residents who have fallen (sometimes on their own). The facility and staff are often neglectful in taking vital signs, and noticing changes in a resident’s condition after a fall event. In the event of a serious internal injury such as a subdural hematoma other trauma the resident may have a short period of time to have the appropriate medical intervention to save their lives.
Falls in Nursing Homes Often Lead to Preventable Death of Residents
Many Minnesota Nursing Home Wrongful Death Attorney cases are related to fall events are due to the lack of post fall interventions, in that efforts sometimes as easy as calling “911” were never taken on the resident’s behalf. After a fall the resident should be fully assessed and monitored looking for any change in the condition where the facility is then legally responsible to notify the resident’s physician, family and should take action to protect the vulnerable resident.
Report Falls in Nursing Homes to Adult Protection
For more information from the Minnesota Department of Health, Office of Health Facility Complaints concerning nursing homes, assisted living and other elder care providers view resolved complaints at the MDH website.
Common Types of Injuries from Falls in Nursing Homes
Here are some summaries on various topics related to nursing home falls and fractures and head injuries often leading to death:
If you have concerns about fall injuries or any other form of elder abuse or neglect, contact Minnesota Elder Abuse Attorney Kenneth LaBore toll free at 612-743-9048 or toll free at 1-888-452-6589 or by email at KLaBore@MNnursinghomeneglect.com.