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Unsanitary Conditions in Nursing Homes Can Cause Illness and Death

 Posted on August 31, 2022 in Nursing Home Abuse

Cook County Nursing Home Abuse LawyerPlacing a loved one in the care of a nursing home or residential care facility can be one of the toughest choices a family makes. Trusting in management and staff to give your loved one the care they need and deserve can feel like a risky gambit, especially when stories of understaffed nursing homes are so common. The last thing you want to worry about is whether the basic conditions at your loved one’s nursing home are sanitary and safe. Yet when a nursing home is struggling to meet staffing requirements, proper sanitation is often one of the first signs that your loved one is being neglected and needs to be given urgent attention. If you are worried about the cleanliness of your parent or grandparent’s nursing home, trust your instincts and find out whether it is time to take action. 

Unsanitary External Conditions May Be a Sign of More Serious Dangers

When you visit your loved one in their nursing home and notice things just do not seem to be clean, take note. Nursing home residents are often elderly and immunocompromised, which can mean that exposure to bacteria, viruses, and other diseases can quickly become dangerous. If common areas like kitchens and bathrooms seem dirty, residents’ equipment may be unclean as well. Medical equipment, such as wheelchairs, oxygen tanks, and catheters, requires regular cleaning and sanitizing. Without careful sanitization, residents can fall victim to: 

  • Athlete’s foot, ringworm, and other fungal diseases 

  • Viruses, like colds, flu, and Covid

  • Infections, including infected bedsores and urinary tract infections

  • Lice and bedbugs 

  • Gastroenteritis

  • Pneumonia

While many of these conditions would not be concerning for a young, healthy body, infections can quickly settle in and become life-threatening to nursing home residents. A mild bed sore that gets infected can quickly become septic if left untreated. A urinary tract infection can become a kidney infection that spreads to other organs and causes severe illness or death. 

Personal Hygiene is Part of Standard Nursing Home Care

Nursing home residents are often completely dependent on staff for assistance with daily hygiene practices. If you visit your loved one and notice their teeth are dirty or smell bad, their diaper seems not to be recently changed, their clothing is dirty, or their bedsheets are stained and smell bad, these could all be warning signs that your loved one is being neglected. Do not wait to take action. 

Meet with a Cook County Nursing Home Injury Lawyer

If your loved one has fallen ill under suspicious circumstances, or if you have observed concerning conditions in your loved one’s nursing home facilities, take action before things get worse. Schedule a free consultation with the experienced Chicago, IL nursing home injury attorneys with Schwartz Injury Law by calling our offices at 312-535-4625



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