Negligence is the inability of a person to take the appropriate caution to ensure the safety of others. In nursing homes, negligence could be physical, emotional, or financial.
This act of negligence can pose a severe threat to the lives of individuals in the nursing home. Such threats could lead to a health crisis. These medical challenges could include dehydration, skin breakdown, malnutrition, etc.
Nursing Home Definition
A nursing home is a facility aimed to provide care for the disabled and the elderly. Nursing homes, also called skilled nursing facilities, provide standard daily care.
Nursing Home Activities
Nursing homes carry out several activities, some of which are;
- Rehabilitation services: Some of these services include speech, physical and occupational therapy. These services are essential to individuals who suffer broken bones, brain injury, or stroke. These services are also beneficial to people who had surgery. Examples of such surgery include knee or hip replacement, open heart surgery, etc.
- Daily medical care for chronic illness
- Skilled Nursing Care: This is the provision of medical care by licensed health care personnel.
- Help in dressing and moving in and out of bed.
With all these activities, there is a need for nursing homes with memory care. But unfortunately, this exceptional service concerning memory care is not available in all nursing homes.
Nursing Home Lawyers
There are several lawyers for nursing home neglect. These skilled nursing home abuse lawyers handle diverse nursing home complaints such as;
- Wrong death
- Severe bedsores
- Repeated falls
- Medical malpractice, such as failure to prevent sepsis
- Physical or sexual abuse
Nursing homes and assisted living are not the same as these institutions vary in function. Assisted living offers daily care like nursing homes. But, this daily is not health inclined as it carries out activities such as;
- Transportation to stores and medical centers
- Housekeeping and chores
In assisted living, some residents share a room. But, residents could also have access to their apartments. The community and dining room are accessible to all residents.
Three meals are available daily for individuals who prefer not to cook. There is also the provision of security, housekeeping, and 24 hours supervision. Plus, these facilities make room for pets.
Nursing Home vs. Assisted Living
There are a lot of differences between a nursing home and assisted living. Some of these differences include the following;
- Nursing homes offer medical care, while assisted living does not.
- Some assisted living communities house pets, while nursing homes do not.
- Nursing homes help individuals who cannot assist themselves, such as the disabled and elderly. Assisted living offers aid to individuals who can help themselves.
Nursing Home Medicaid
It is vital not to confuse Medicaid with medicare. Medicare covers part of the nursing home cost for at most 100 days. Medicaid offers long-term services, and it is government-approved. This federal program provides health coverage for;
- elderly adults
- people with disabilities
- low-income adults
- pregnant women
Nonetheless, some facilities do not accept Medicaid. These facilities insist on private pay only.
5 Common and Serious Issues Related to Nursing Home Negligence
Nursing home abuse and neglect could lead to any of the following:
Due to poor maintenance, many nursing home residents fall. This act also came about due to inadequate supervision. To prevent residents from falling, nursing home attendants should keep dining areas and hallways wet-free to avoid slipping. These areas should also be free from clutter to avoid bumps leading to a fall.
Some falling incidents occur due to a lack of guidance around steep places such as staircases. Severe falls could lead to broken bones, bruises, or damage to internal organs.
Bedsores occur due to understaffing or hiring under qualified staff. This injury also occurs when an individual does not turn over in bed for two hours.
Due to understaffing, one person might do all the patients’ rounds. As a result, this individual might not spot early bed sores due to the number of patients that need attention.
Due to the absence of dieticians, nursing home patients suffer from malnutrition. In addition, the lack of this nursing home care makes most elderly residents suffer. This effect results from an advancement in age that results in a weakened hunger sensation.
Plus, the food offered at nursing homes might not be tasty enough. As a result, many struggles to eat or not eat. Malnutrition poses a severe health challenge as the residents might lose their physical vigor and become fragile. Plus, these patients could have weak immune systems due to the absence of a balanced diet.
Assault is one of the significant examples of nursing home abuse reporting. This assault happens among the older residents in the nursing home. As people age, they have childlike dispositions.
This young emotional state results in the escalation of little disagreement. This escalation could lead to fights and other violent acts. If no one separates the battle, there could be adverse effects such as injuries. In addition, other severe health complications could also arise, leading to early death.
Nursing home neglect could result in several diseases. A few infections include;
Scabies is an infectious dermal disease caused by the itch mite. Individuals with robust immune systems can combat this disease. But, most patients in nursing homes lack a solid immune system. Thus, they fall prey to the disease.
- Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)
UTI is a contagious disease that attacks the urinary tract. Under normal circumstances, this illness is avoidable. But, due to a lack of appropriate nursing home care, this disease has become a menace.
It is also one of the recurrent diseases due to the frequent use of catheters. Plus, drinking small amounts of fluids is also a contributing factor.
- Staph Infection
Staph infection is a skin infection caused by a bacteria known as Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA). This bacteria attacks the body system by entering through skin cuts and sores. This disease poses a severe threat to a nursing home due to its antibiotic resistance.
Pneumonia is one of the many nursing home complaints that need immediate attention. This respiratory infection attacks the lungs and leaves the individual wheezing. Sometimes such individuals also gasp for breath due to small lung capacity. This disease is also prevalent due to the many hours of lying down.
Sepsis is an infectious disease where many bacteria cells are in the bloodstream. The bacteria works by damaging the organ’s productivity. Therefore, an advanced stage of sepsis could proceed to septic shocks in the long run.
Nursing homes should always be a utopia for senior citizens. Still, things don’t always go as planned.
Nursing home abuse could lead to falls, bedsores, and assaults. Also, there are several diseases caused due to nursing home neglect. Some examples include sepsis, pneumonia, scabies, and the like.