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Can a Sepsis Infection be a Sign of Nursing Home Neglect?

Posted on in Nursing Home Abuse


Chicago Lawyers for Sepsis in Nursing HomesInfections occur frequently in many health care facilities, but they are of particular concern in nursing homes where residents often have compromised health conditions. Elderly residents are often sick and incapable of fighting infection, leading to life-threatening conditions. Nursing homes owe a duty of care to their residents to prevent conditions like sepsis from occurring. 

If someone you love was seriously injured or died as a result of a sepsis infection during their stay in a nursing home, you may have grounds for a personal injury or wrongful death claim. An Illinois attorney experienced in nursing home injuries can help you understand your options. 

When Does Sepsis Occur?

The human body is amazingly adept at fighting off infections. Sometimes, however, the body reacts to a preexisting infection by effectively turning the infection-fighting process against itself. This can cause serious and even fatal damage to organs such as the lungs and heart. 

Common bacterial infections in the lungs, skin, or urinary tracts can trigger sepsis, but viral infections such as influenza can trigger sepsis as well. Sepsis generally takes place when these infections are not treated promptly, allowing the infection to spread. If left untreated, sepsis may progress to septic shock, causing a dangerous drop in blood pressure that can ultimately result in death. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that nearly 270,000 Americans die of sepsis every year. 

Is a Long-Term Care Facility Responsible for Sepsis Infections? 

Some infections occur as a result of the body’s imperfections, and, unfortunately, not all infections can be prevented even in the best of circumstances. However, nursing homes and other long-term care facilities have a legal obligation to protect residents from infections if possible. Basic precautions can prevent the spread of germs: 

  • Washing hands frequently and thoroughly, using soap and warm water

  • Proper sanitization of the nursing home facility and medical instruments such as catheters 

  • Avoiding bedsores by moving residents who cannot move by themselves

  • Promptly recognizing and addressing infections

  • Wearing masks when appropriate 

 

Residential facilities that fail to take proper precautions may be held liable for contributing to the onset or development of a serious sepsis infection. 

Speak with a Cook County Nursing Home Negligence Attorney

Sepsis can be a life-threatening condition for everyone, but especially for elderly individuals. If your loved one developed sepsis in the care of a nursing home facility, negligence may have played a role. At Schwartz Injury Law, a skilled Chicago, IL elder abuse attorney can help you determine whether the onset of sepsis was due to neglect on the part of the nursing home staff. You may be entitled to damages and could help prevent this kind of tragedy from happening in the future. Contact us today at 312-535-4625 to schedule a no-obligation consultation. 

 

Sources:

https://www.cdc.gov/sepsis/what-is-sepsis.html 

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=1452&ChapterID=31

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