Nursing home fall injuries are incredibly tragic. Unfortunately, they continue to be fairly commonplace in nursing homes across the country. While many facilities do their best to prevent these accidents from happening, others become negligent in their patient care and facility upkeep, leading to often-severe fall injuries (and even death in some cases). Here is a handy guide for understanding the nature of nursing home fall injuries, and what causes them to happen in the first place:
How Commonly Do Nursing Home Falls Happen?
Because most residents of nursing homes are too ill or feeble to live alone, falls in nursing homes are prevalent. This frequently indicates that residents are already at a higher risk of falling. When compared to seniors living in community settings, nursing home patients tend to be older, have greater difficulty walking, and have more chronic health concerns. Due to their more at-risk nature, these residents must be given special accommodations to help prevent falls that can result in significant injuries and even death. The more professionally and pragmatically a nursing home operation is run, the less likely residents are to experience the tragedy of falling, and being harmed.
Residents of nursing homes may also experience worsening memory issues, difficulty carrying out everyday tasks, difficulties caring for themselves, and mobility issues. Despite the elevated risk, the majority of falls may be avoided, and in these situations, nursing home falls may be an indication of nursing home carelessness. The best method to establish if nursing home falls were preventable is to understand their underlying causes. If you’ve discovered that your loved one was harmed as a result of a nursing home’s negligence, you (or your loved one) may be entitled to financial compensation.
Common Causes of Nursing Home Falls
Wearing corrective lenses, Huntington’s disease, cognitive disorders, incontinence, a previous history of falls, needing walking assistance devices, active fractures and/or other injuries, being over/underweight, confusion, and other causes are all commonplace reasons for nursing home residents experiencing dangerous or even deadly falls. The more aware a nursing home facility is of its patients’ needs, the more effectively it can ensure that its patients have a minimal chance of experiencing a fall accident. Nursing homes are hyper-aware of this problem and often put in tons of hours to ensure their facilities are safe for their residents, however.
Alongside these causes, many common hazards have been known to cause harmful falling accidents in nursing homes. Poor lighting, wet floors, clutter, poorly maintained walking and bed equipment, uneven floors, inaccessible personal items, ill-fitting clothing, and other hazards put nursing home patients at risk across the country daily. When a nursing home facility falls to prevent these hazards, the case can be made that they are responsible for patients’ fall accidents. Slip-and-fall style accidents are especially common, and make up a large portion of the fall accident cases that are filed against nursing homes every year in the US.
Common Injuries from Nursing Home Falls
Falls in nursing homes frequently have negative effects. Anyone can experience this, but elderly or feeble individuals are especially so. Because elderly patients are more brittle, and often have pre-existing health issues, falls can greatly exacerbate these already-existing problems. Nursing home falls can result in a variety of injuries. Concussions, spinal injuries, fractures (especially hip fractures), broken bones, cognitive issues, anxiety, and even death can occur after a fall in a nursing home.
Because some residents of nursing homes may be using blood thinners, which might increase their risk of uncontrolled bleeding, falls that result in head injuries can be particularly hazardous. This lethal combo has the potential to cause catastrophic brain injury, other long-term health issues, and death. Fall-related injuries can harm residents’ quality of life and mobility. Residents may experience a dread of falling and stop being as active as they previously were, even if falls do not result in injury. This may result in social isolation and a decline in the standard of life a patient experiences during their time in the nursing home as well.
There are plenty of legal resources to assist nursing home fall accident victims and their family members. If you suspect a loved one has been injured due to dangerous conditions at their nursing home, or a neglectful staff member, you should get in contact with a qualified and experienced nursing home attorney ASAP. Doing so will help you ensure that the facility is held accountable for any injuries and/or negligence they are causing.