Many nursing home residents are unable to move themselves from one location to another and need the assistance of nursing home staff to makes these moves. Just getting from their bed to a wheelchair is a feat and requires that someone is there to lift them safely to their chair. While most nursing homes have protocols on how to properly transfer these patients, too often these procedures are not followed and the patient gets dropped during the move.
The Chicago nursing home abuse attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC have experience with patients who have suffered injuries or even fatalities when staff drop them. While staff at a facility may claim that and incident was 'unavoidable' or simply did not occur, you can rest assured that our office will get you the answers you deserve when it comes to how any why an incident occurred. Contact our office today for a free case review of your nursing home drop case today.
Types Of Transfers Used By Staff To Move Disabled Patients
Most nursing home patients are dropped during routine transfer from one area to the next. Many of these patients have limited mobility and require a wheelchair and the drop will happen when they are transferred into or out of the chair. Common types of transfers are:
- From bed to wheelchair or visa versa
- From wheelchair to shower or bath
- Using the toilet
- From one chair to another
- Hoyer Lift falls
These activities happen throughout the day and many facilities have rules regarding transfers. Depending on the mobility or weight of the patient, there may need to be two or more staff members needed for the transfer and sometimes the use of a mechanical lift is needed.
Dropped Patient Injuries
The injuries that can occur from dropping a patient that is already frail can be catastrophic. Many times the patient is elevated when the fall occurs and is unable to break the fall due to a weakened condition. The patient may fall directly on to their hip or tailbone and may be awkwardly positioned when they do so. Some injuries that happened during these types of falls are:
- Fractured bones: hips, legs, arms, facial bones, etc.
- Traumatic brain injury
- Internal organ damage
Falls are the leading cause of injury death in elderly patients 65 years or older and 1 out of 3 elderly fall every year. However, those living in nursing homes are even more susceptible to falls, having an average of 2.6 falls per patient, per year. These falls account for 87% of fractures in the elderly.
Why Patients Are Dropped
Most times when a patient is dropped in a nursing home, it is not a matter of abuse but instead bad judgment or not following protocol in the patients plan of care. However, it is not always just the staff members that are at fault. Many nursing homes are grievously understaffed and have poor training for their employees. Also, lack of equipment or poorly maintained equipment that is needed for safe transfers can also be an issue. Yet in other situations, commonly used Hoyer Lifts are not properly maintained or replaced when needed putting patients at risk for serious injury.Chicago Nursing Home Liability for Injuries Sustained by Patients Who are Dropped by Staff
The root cause of most incidents involving a patient dropped at a nursing home or other medical facility is the negligence of the facility in assessing the patient’s care needs or the negligence of individual staff member responsible for implementing the care.
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC are experienced Chicago, IL based nursing home abuse attorneys that understand the complexity of dropped patient cases. We will work with our team of experts to fully investigate the incident and get to the underlying factors behind the incident. If the nursing home is at fault, we will fight to get the best possible financial award and will go to trial if a settlement is not an option. Our consultations are always free and we invite you to meet with us to discuss your situation. Don’t accept an explanation that your loved one’s ‘dropping incident’ was unavoidable.