Injuries and wandering off continue to plague nursing homes

Posted on behalf of Stewart Bell, PLLC on Feb 28, 2012 in Nursing Home Injury or Death

When a loved one can no longer care for themselves, many families in West Virginia turn to a nursing home or assisted living facility as the best option for long-term care. The federal government has established quality ratings for nursing homes that aim to provide a more accurate picture of the quality of care these facilities provide.

While several nursing homes throughout the country and West Virginia continue to show improved rankings over previous years, many still rank low due to persistent nursing home Injuries . These injuries typically stem from wandering off, use of excessive force by staff and failure to monitor patients closely enough.

At one low-ranking facility, investigators cited nine documented instances of a single patient who suffers from dementia being found alone outside. In a separate instance at this same facility, another resident was found unattended with broken glass and cuts to her neck and wrists. This same patient was also subsequently found unattended in her wheelchair outside the nursing home.

While these cases may seem extreme, many nursing homes throughout West Virginia are plagued by similar problems. When researching potential nursing home facilities it's important to look at several factors including documented cases of the following:

-?- Wandering off

-?- Slip and fall injuries

-?- medication errors

-?- Bedsores

-?- Injuries caused by restraints

It's also wise to ask for records related to how the facility has ranked for the past several years. Have their rankings been consistently high or have they declined over time? Deciding on the best long-term care option for a loved one is a difficult and emotionally-charged decision. Being informed and asking important questions related to a nursing home's safely record can help provide peace of mind.

Source: The Journal News, "Low ratings dog several nursing homes; inspections cite injuries, wandering," Theresa Juva-Brown and Tim Henderson, Feb. 26, 2012

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