Nursing Home Slip and Falls

Nursing Home Slip and Falls

Can they be prevented?

Nursing Home FallsAccording to the National Center on Elder Abuse, an estimated three million seniors will reside in nursing homes by 2030. With nearly 75 percent of all nursing home residents experiencing falls annually, slips and falls are a leading cause of preventable injuries, as reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Falls are serious not only because of potential consequent injuries such as broken bones, internal bleeding, and immobility, but also because of the long-term consequences such as increased susceptibility to infections, bed sores, and pneumonia.

Even if a person recovers after a fall and injury there are lingering consequences.  A person recovered from an injury may remain immobile, because once a person falls they can become very afraid to walk.  This causes these folks to reduce their activity, making them weaker.  This weakness, along with other factors, actually doubles a resident’s chances of falling again according to the CDC.

Being aware of resident and nursing home risk factors can help to reduce fall accidents among nursing home residents.

Resident Risk Factors

  • Poor vision
  • Unstable, ill-fitting footwear
  • Difficulty walking and maintaining balance
  • Vitamin D deficiency
  • Muscle weakness
  • Use of medicines that can affect balance, such as anti-depressants or sedatives

Nursing Home Risk Factors

  • Trip hazards, such as a food tray or rolling cart left in the hallway
  • Slip hazards, such as fluids left on the floor
  • Not having readily available assistive devices, such as walkers, wheelchairs, or gait belts may cause residents to engage in daily activities without them
  • Failing to change the batteries on alarms designed to alert staff when an at-risk resident gets out of bed or a wheelchair
  • Incontinent residents who are not regularly monitored may attempt to use the restroom on their own
  • Residents who do not receive their required medication may become disoriented and confused, leading them to wander into potentially dangerous situations
  • Thirty-five percent of nursing home falls happen to residents that are unable to walk when staff members fail to raise protective bed rails and residents often fall out of bed
  • Sometimes, protocols and procedures are not followed when transferring a resident from one place to another and residents may be dropped by staff
  • A poorly designed floor-plan that places nurses far away from patients can reduce response time and exacerbate fall injuries. This environmental hazard, as well as lighting, floor composition, or level changes constitute 16 to 27 percent of falls among residents, according to the CDC

Nursing homes must comply with federal and state regulations regarding the care of residents. Nursing home residents have certain rights, including the right to live in a safe, decent, and clean environment; to receive assistance; and to be treated with courtesy, consideration, and respect. Caregivers who cause residents to suffer injuries and nursing homes that provide inadequate training or do not meet federal and state standards can be held liable for their negligence.

New Jersey Nursing Home Negligence Lawyers at Davis & Brusca, LLC Hold Nursing Homes Accountable for Abuse and Neglect

If your loved one has suffered injury from a slip and fall accident or was otherwise the victim of nursing home negligence, contact a New Jersey nursing home negligence lawyer at Davis & Brusca, LLC. From our offices in Princeton, we represent clients throughout New Jersey in Middlesex County, Essex County, Hudson County, Union County, Morris County, Hunterdon County, as well as in South Jersey, including Camden County, Cumberland County, and Gloucester CountyContact us online or call us at 609-786-2540 for a confidential consultation.


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