Inadequate maintenance of a lift is responsible for the death of a patient at Eskaton Care Center Manzanita (California). The lift at issue is used to help staff transfer physically disabled patients into and out of their bed.
According to an investigation completed by the California Department of Health, the 60-year-old nursing home patient was being transported from a wheelchair to bed when the sling on the lifting device broke and causing the patient to fall to the floor and suffer a head injury which subsequently caused his death.
The agency determined that the nursing home failed to perform the appropriate maintenance on the machine as directed by the lift manufacturer. As a result of the nursing homes omissions, it was issued a AA Citation and fined $100,000.
Injuries During Transfer
Many patients suffer needless injuries during transfers from a wheelchair to bed, as a result of defective products or errors made by staff. As required, by each patient’s ‘care plan’ the degree of assistance should be specified based on the patients level of strength and size.
I frequently see patients injured when staff ignore the parameters set forth for transfers and attempt to transfer patients without adequate assistance. Another culprit in transfer-related injury cases is that some facilities are inadequately staffed, making a two, three or four person assist unfeasible.
Nonetheless, if your loved one suffered an injury during a transfer, you should immediately question why the incident occurred. In these cases, I suggest contacting the state’s department of health and filing a complaint that will trigger an investigation into the incident.
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