Sure, it could simply be a coincidence that these folks decided to give a call about problems at the facility– at roughly the same time– but a closer evaluation of the circumstances typically reveals that many of the similar complaints are indeed related to significant care-related problems at the facility.
Particularly when it comes to the development of pressure sores (also know as: pressure ulcers, decubitus ulcers or bed sores) I commonly preach that these horrific emblems of neglect are the result of a broken system of care at the facility. Make no mistake about it, pressure sores result when shift-after-shift of nursing home workers fails to attend to the needs of patients day-after-day.
Frankly, another disgusting example of this systemic neglect was reported in a recent article appearing the TheTelegraph.com article “Alton nursing home faced sanctions.” The article details how Eunice C. Smith Nursing Home almost lost it Medicare funding after several nursing home surveys confirmed inadequate care that resulted in the development of pressure sores on numerous patients.
Interviews conducted with staff and review of patients’ medical charts portray a facility that not only ignores the care requirements of patients, but a lack of communication when it comes to conveying important medical information to families.
For example staff at Eunice C. Smith never notified a patient’s son (and legal representative) that his father was receiving medical treatment for an early-stage pressure sore over the course of several weeks. It wasn’t until the the patient was admitted to a local hospital did the son become aware of the wound (by which time the wound had become advanced).
Not surprisingly evidence of improper care was not confined to the above situation, surveys from the facility document patients with existing pressure sores left unattended by staff for hours on end— when the patients were incontinent! Further, the survey identified patients who developed pressure sores within weeks of their initial admission to the facility.
Oh, but no need to worry according to administrator Harold Lutz, while referring to the survey findings, “[t]he scope of it was not very widespread.” Similarly deflecting the significance of the findings, “[i]ndustry-wide, things like this do happen from time to time.”
Obviously, Mr. Lutz doesn’t have a family member at his facility.