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Nursing Home Staffing Issues Can Lead to Poor Patient Care

Posted on in Neglect

Chicago nursing home injury attorneysNews stories involving nursing home abuse and neglect are tragically frequent occurrences in the United States. In many such stories, residents and their families are suing nursing homes which provide poor care, or even worse, subject innocent nursing home residents to abuse and purposeful mistreatment. At the heart of many nursing home abuse and neglect cases are problems with nursing home staff. Many nursing homes and other long-term care facilities are understaffed or employ staff who are not adequately trained. When staffing issues plague a nursing home, it is often the residents who end up suffering.

Understaffed Nursing Homes Put Residents at Increased Risk of Medical Complications

You may have previously heard about staffing issues at nursing homes, but few recognize how serious the problem really is. According to one report prepared by the Department of Health and Human Services, an incredible 90 percent of U.S. nursing homes are understaffed. Residents in facilities which do not have enough nurses, nurses’ aides, or other staff members are more likely to suffer from many preventable maladies including bedsores, infections, dehydration, malnutrition, weight loss, and pneumonia.

Often, nursing home staff are simply too overworked to notice when the residents entrusted to their care need medical attention. In one survey, nearly half of the nurses who responded admitted to missing the signs of worsening patient condition due to their high workload. Lack of supervision caused by understaffing is also a major cause of resident wandering and elopement.

Inadequate Staff Training Leads to Dangerously Ill-Equipped Nursing Home Employees

Another major concern when it comes to nursing home resident care is under-trained staff. Nursing home residents often have complex medical and personal needs which must be met. Staff who have not received proper training may not know how to address residents’ problems sufficiently.

Furthermore, many nursing home residents have cognitive decline caused by old age, dementia, Alzheimer’s Disease, or other conditions. These conditions can cause residents to become confused, uncooperative, and even hostile. Nursing home workers who have not learned how to effectively and compassionately care for residents with cognitive impairments can make the situation even worse.

Sadly, some nursing home staff choose to take their work frustrations out on innocent residents. When this happens, nursing home residents can suffer physical, emotional, and even sexual abuse. Through a personal injury lawsuit, families of injured or killed nursing home residents can hold negligent nursing home facilities accountable for their wrongdoing.

Contact a Cook County Nursing Home Abuse Attorney

If you or a loved one has been a victim of nursing home neglect or abuse, contact an experienced Chicago nursing home abuse and neglect attorney from Schwartz Injury Law for help. Call 312-535-4625 to schedule a free consultation today.

 

Sources:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2594332/?page=1

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?ActID=1225&SeqStart=4200000&SeqEnd=6350000

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