New York Nursing Home Negligent Supervision
Is not providing sufficient supervision to nursing home residents neglect?
New York nursing home abuse attorneys The Orlow Firm know the importance of knowing your loved ones are safe. If you have relatives in a nursing home, it is imperative that they receive the supervision and assistance needed. Failing to do so could result in serious accidents and potential injury.
Contact an experienced New York nursing home abuse attorney
Have you or your loved one suffered neglect at a nursing home? You need a strong, reliable, knowledgeable defense. We can help. At The Orlow Firm, we will fight for your rights. Call (646) 647-3398 to speak with one of our attorneys.
Adam Orlow: “The nursing home has the responsibility to care for their patients that the people that they employ are people who are going to behave appropriately. They also have the responsibility to protect them and to make sure that they’re safe.”
Brian Orlow: “Either the nurses don’t care or they’re just overworked and there are too many patients that unfortunately the neglect in a lot of these nursing homes causes neglect to the patients and the patients don’t get the care that they need.”
Adam Orlow: “If there’s an act on the part of either the employee or even an outside person who somehow manages to harm the patient whether it’s either a sexual assault or a physical assault or to commit some other type of harm to that patient, if that person had a background, had engaged in that type of conduct before or had engaged in some type of inappropriate conduct before whether it’s a criminal history or something else which should have given the employer, meaning the nursing home, notice that they could potentially engage in that type of conduct again, then the nursing home will be held responsible for that.”
Lost or Missing From a Nursing Home in New York
Anyone with dementia is in danger of wandering and becoming lost, even in the best New York City residential care facility, whether a nursing home or assisted living facility. It is extremely important that nursing home staff be aware of patients that might wander and know how to find them quickly once they do.
Dementia and Wandering Patients in NYC Nursing Homes
People with dementia wander because they are disoriented, restless, agitated or anxious. They may be looking for someone, or something, or believe there is some chore that they must do. Once they wander, they are unable to recognize their surroundings and return to safety. The longer they are lost, the greater their risk of death by exposure to heat or cold, drowning (even in shallow water), or being hit by a vehicle. If your loved one has been lost by a New York nursing home, you need to call a NYC elder abuse lawyer.
Assessment and Prevention of Missing Nursing Home Residents
All nursing home residents should be thoroughly assessed for risk of wandering. Some are diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or other diseases causing disorientation and memory loss. Early symptoms of dementia, however, may go undiagnosed for years. Family members can be instrumental in providing valuable information: Does the relative have difficulty with routine tasks such as preparing meals, keeping a schedule or managing medication? Does the relative show signs of poor judgment, like leaving the stove on? Does the relative become lost in familiar surroundings?
Once a patient is assessed as being at risk of wandering, staff should be able to target them for intensive supervision. These residents may be given a colored wristband or a gown of a special color. Their beds and rooms should be located to allow for easy observation, away from doors, stairs and elevators. Their environments should be free of stresses that can trigger wandering, such as excessive noise or glaring lights. Physical restraints, which increase agitation, should be avoided.
Protocols for Lost Residents of NYC Nursing Homes
In nursing homes, incidences of lost or wandering residents are most often due to inadequate staffing, poor building design, and inadequate precautions such as alarm systems. Because wandering residents must be found swiftly to avoid injury or death, nursing homes must have a rapid and efficient response system. Staff should be fully trained in search procedures and these protocols should be routinely tested. If the resident is not found within 30 minutes to 2 hours, nursing homes should contact local law enforcement agencies and coordinate search efforts.
For people with dementia, it’s a dangerous world out there. If your loved one suffered harm by wandering from a nursing home, consult a knowledgeable nursing home neglect attorney to see if proper prevention and safety procedures were in place and correctly followed.
Call (646) 647-3398 for a free consultation and case evaluation.
Negligent Supervision in Nursing Homes and Assisted Living Communities in New York
When a nursing home is charged with negligent supervision, the defense they most often use is that they can’t be expected to monitor each resident 24 hours a day. This is exactly what administrators of a Chicago-area nursing home claimed when an 84 year-old patient died after setting himself on fire while lighting an illicit cigarette. In fact, one of the primary responsibilities of a nursing home is to monitor and supervise the activities of its residents. The facility knew that this particular patient had a tendency to sneak cigarettes, and they had a duty to ensure that he was denied access to them and, more importantly, the means to light them.
Importance of Care Plans in NYC Nursing Homes
The principal purpose of a care plan is to understand the risks to each patient’s safety and to establish ways in which to avoid those risks. Further, once the care plan is devised, it must be followed. If a patient is especially prone to falling, staff must consistently monitor him to prevent him from moving about on his own. If a patient has a tendency to wander, a condition affecting many residents with dementia, the facility must maintain a working alarm system at all exits. When the alarms are turned off, staff must make sure that the exits are visually monitored. In one facility, a man wandered away on an intensely hot day and was found lying in the middle of an intersection. The staff claimed they had not heard the alarm sound. In addition, although the man was known to wander aimlessly, staff did not consider him to be an elopement risk. Therefore, they did not fit him with an electronic monitoring device.
Nursing Home Residents Rights in NYC
Nursing home staff will sometimes make use of restraints in order to limit the movement of residents and make supervision easier. These practices violate the Nursing Home Patient’s Bill of Rights, which guarantees the rights of all patients to be free from restraints. These devices may be physical, such as belts or straps used to tie a patient to the bed. Or, they may be chemical, such as drugs which cause heavy sedation. Both methods often cause more problems than they solve. Residents become anxious and agitated when they are restrained. They may seriously injure themselves while trying to force their way out of straps or belts that are binding them. Bedrails designed to keep patients from falling out of bed have proved especially dangerous. Patients can become trapped between a rail and the mattress, causing them to suffer injury or to die by strangulation. Chemical restraints may be administered in excessive doses, interfering with the patient’s mental and emotional functioning. Worse, they can lead to drug overdose.
Nursing homes face a great challenge in monitoring each patient to provide for maximum levels of safety. The task can be made somewhat easier by knowing the particular risks each patient presents and designing a plan to address those risks. Nursing facilities must not only prevent patients from encountering harm, they must do so in ways that keep residents free from physical injury, emotional and mental impairment, and insults to their dignity.
If you have a loved one that has been a victim of elder abuse in New York please contact the personal injury attorneys at The Orlow Firm.
Representing Victims of Negligent Nursing Home Supervision in NYC
If you have a close friend or family member who has been injured due to improper nursing home supervision, The Orlow firm can help to determine if the facility was negligent. Another form of nursing home negligence can be negligent security. If so, our dedicated attorneys can assist you in exploring the options available to you for holding the facility liable and for preventing further risks to resident safety.
Call (646) 647-3398 for a free consultation and case evaluation.