Compassionate Legal Support When You Need It Most
Compassionate Legal Support When You Need It Most

Hip fractures are on the rise from nursing home neglect

Common but preventable injuries often occur in Maryland nursing homes. The number of hip fractures in these facilities is rising due to the increasing number of elderly residents in conjunction with unfavorable conditions. Most of these injuries occur due to neglect from staff that doesn’t care or is overworked.

The perfect storm for increasing neglect

The number of seniors admitted to nursing facilities keeps increasing because of our aging population. At the same time, many nursing homes do not have sufficient staff, leading to an increase in unsupervised residents. This lack of supervision results in accidents and nursing home neglect. Of the 300,000 hip fractures that occur annually in the United States, about 8% of these are in nursing facilities. Many happen just days after a resident’s admission. The most common causes are falls from beds and wheelchairs, followed by wet floors in common areas and tripping over medical equipment in hallways.

Methods to prevent falls include always using two-person transfers when assisting residents, identifying those who are most at risk, and then implementing plans to keep them safe. Preventive methods also include low beds, soft floor mats next to beds, and increased supervision.

Many victims suffer a noticeable decline in their physical and mental well-being following a hip fracture. Some may even end up dying due to complications.

Mismanagement is often the root cause

While staff cannot prevent all falls, they certainly can prevent most of them. Nursing home management is at fault by keeping the facilities short-staffed to try and turn a profit. Improper staff training can also contribute to dangerous situations for residents. Additionally, negligence can result in elder abuse where residents are physically, verbally and mentally mistreated. Abuse and neglect in these facilities can take many forms, including medication errors, infections, dehydration, malnourishment, not bathing residents and leaving them in unsanitary conditions. Those with memory issues may be left to their own devices where they wander out of the facility.

Falls and broken bones are noticeable situations of potential nursing home abuse, but other signs are more subtle. If your loved one suddenly becomes quiet and withdrawn or has an unexplained decline in health, you may have a case against the facility for nursing home neglect.