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Jury Holds Nursing Home Responsible For Negligent Catheter Care

Negligent catheter careWhen a loved one transfers to a nursing home, you expect them to be taken care of as well as you wish you were able to do yourself. However, Margaret Smith found out that this is not always the case. Her 88-year old mother Janet transferred to Belmont Lodge Health Care Center in 2011 in order to facilitate recovery after breaking both her ankles. She would never leave the facility again.

The fatal negligence

Because Janet Smith had suffered two broken ankles, she received a catheter. However, it was later discovered that the employees at the nursing home did not monitor the catheter properly. It was not long before Janet Smith had developed a substantial urinary tract infection. Because the infection was never addressed properly, it ended up in her bloodstream and became fatal. The nursing home records showed that at one time, Janet Smith had gone almost 22 hours without a recorded check-in.

Jury holds the nursing home responsible

After taking the case to court, the jury found in favor of Margaret Smith and ruled that the nursing home has to pay a total of $3.7 million. Even though Margaret Smith can be happy that action is undertaken against those responsible, it does not make up for her tragic loss.

Be aware of the signs of nursing home neglect

Sometimes the residents of a nursing home are at an elevated risk of a number of ailments. This can occur because of neglect or a lack of appropriate care. Be aware of the following signs that may indicate your loved one is not receiving the attention he or she needs:

  • Falls – This is the most severe and frequent cause of injury in the elderly. The result of a bone breaking can be because of malnutrition or osteoporosis. If the facility does not have proper observation, the patient could be left on the floor for several hours, this may exacerbate any additional trauma he or she already experienced from the fall.
  • Bedsores – Anyone who spends extended periods of time in bed may suffer from bedsores. These may range from mild all the way to fatal. In its mildest form, it represents a red irritation that quickly goes away. Bedsores can only result from unrelieved pressure that persists for several hours, possibly even days. The presence of bedsores means that the patient is not receiving appropriate attention.
  • Malnutrition and dehydration – Dementia or poor care can lead to the individual being unable to respond to normal bodily needs. This can lead to malnutrition and dehydration. Improper nutrition can result in a compromised immune system or the kind of fragility or weakness of the bones that might result in fractures

Remember that showing signs of nursing home neglect do not automatically mean that something is done on purpose, but it does mean that something is amiss. If you are unable to get the response you want from that nursing home, contact a lawyer who has worked on nursing home abuse and neglect before in order to discuss your situation and find out how to proceed.

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