Nursing Home Falls
While many nursing home falls are accidents and truly due to mistakes or misjudgments on the part of nursing home staff members, others are the result of senseless and reckless disregard for patient safety. Regardless of why a person falls, the nursing home is liable for compensating the injured patient if the accident could have been prevented. The nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys of Nursing Home Law Center LLC believe that the quality of nursing care has dropped significantly in recent years and aggressively pursue compensation on behalf of the victims of abuse and neglect in order to prevent similar accidents from occurring to others.The Primary Causes of Nursing Home Falls
Elderly patients are at a fall risk due to the ongoing deterioration of their bodies which may be exacerbated by certain medical conditions which affect bone density, motor function or balance. Nursing care facilities need to take every reasonable step toward ensuring that the existing risk of falls is not compounded due to negligence and a disregard for safety. Following is a list of preventable causes of nursing home falls that our Chicago nursing injury lawyers encounter on a routine basis.
Lack of supervision — every patient that is admitted to a nursing facility requires a personalized plan of care that addresses any medical conditions and needs that are specific to that individual. There is no reason why any patient that presents a fall risk should be unsupervised and allowed to attempt to move on his or her own. When this occurs and the patient falls, it is the responsibility of the nursing home to provide compensation for the cost of medical treatment and other expenses.
Environmental hazards — there are numerous environmental hazards that can prove catastrophic in the atmosphere elderly patients are required to live in. These include wet floors, clutter and furniture with a low profile. These hazards pose a risk to any individual, let alone the elderly and it is the duty of nursing care staff to ensure that wet floors are marked, clutter is organized and out of the way and that there is no furniture that can present a tripping risk to residents.
Falling while entering or exiting chairs or vehicles — elderly patients who suffer from conditions that limit their mobility may require assistance getting in and out of bed, into or out of a wheelchair or into or out of a vehicle. The staff members that assist these patients need to take steps to ensure that the patient is safe such as applying the brakes to wheelchairs and hospital beds and using proper technique when assisting a patient to his or her feet.
The injuries elderly patients may suffer when falling can be debilitating and painful, especially if they are already suffering from conditions which limit their independence and mobility. Our nursing negligence lawyers have often found that these injuries permanently impact the victims’ quality of living in their final years. The most common injuries suffered due to falls follow below.
Fractures and shattered bones — the combination of old age and the brunt trauma caused by hitting the ground can cause severe fractures. The most common bones that are broken in falls are the wrists, arms, hips, legs and knees. Fractures are much more difficult to treat when the patient is elderly and suffering from other medical conditions and surgery is often required to help the bone heal properly or to replace a damaged joint.
Internal injuries — it is possible for a fall to cause trauma to internal organs or to result in the perforation of blood vessels underneath the skin. These conditions can turn deadly quickly if doctors are unaware of the bleeding, the patient is on blood thinning medications or the damage to internal organs is unnoticed.
Traumatic brain injuries — blows to the head are also possible during falls, either due to a collision with an object on the way to the ground or with the ground itself. Whenever the brain suffers trauma, fluid can build up within tiny micro tears that are undetectable without the use of imaging technology such as MRI or PET scanning. Victims who suffer from these injuries may lose the ability to recall important events, diminished motor function, the inability to speak or communicate, the loss of hearing or vision or cognitive impairment. A TBI can be a tragic and life altering injury.
Falls can also result in premature death. When this is the case, the family of the deceased has the right to file a lawsuit on the grounds of wrongful death. These are the most unfortunate and appalling cases we have taken on and we are very serious about finding justice for the victim’s family whenever this is the case.
Nursing Home Law Center LLC is a leading personal injury law firm specializing in the recovery of compensation for anyone who has been injured due to another person’s actions. We have a team of attorneys that specialize solely in representing clients who have been injured due to negligent, neglectful or abusive nursing care. Their knowledge of the law and extensive experience give them the best chance of recovering the maximum amount of compensation on your behalf that the law will allow.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a nursing home fall, contact us today to arrange a risk free and confidential consultation with one of our award-winning nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys so that we can gather all of the information we need to investigate your claim. We will review legal options with you so that you know what your rights are and what you can expect if you choose to pursue legal action against the nursing facility responsible for you or your loved one’s injuries. Should we be unable to secure damages on your behalf, you are assured that our services will be free of charge.Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Resources