Abuse and neglect are the worst things that can happen to your loved one in a nursing home facility, with neglect being the more rampant of the two.
While many signs could indicate neglect, such as poor hygiene, unkempt beds, or poor grooming, bedsores are the most common and most damaging to residents.
Bedsores and Their Causes
Bedsores refer to injuries on the skin and its underlying tissue resulting from extended pressure. Usually, they develop on skins and tissues that cover a boney area such as heels, ankles, buttocks, and hips. In most cases, they develop pretty fast and cause a lot of pain to a patient.
Bedsores are common in people who have problems moving or turning in bed. They are also rampant in patients with incontinence, malnutrition, or previous sores.
Fortunately, preventing bedsores doesn’t require much. Ensuring that a patient does not stay in one position for long by turning them or timely cleaning are all nursing home staff need.
Nursing Home’s Duty of Care
After admission to a nursing home facility, the first course of action nursing home caregivers should take is to assess a patient’s condition. After that, they formulate a care plan for the individual based on their condition, which also determines the charges. Once the admission process is complete, the patient is under the care of the nursing home, meaning the nursing home owes a duty of care to the resident.
Sometimes a nursing home can fail to offer the necessary care owed to the patient based on their assessment. If bedsores result from the caregiver’s failure to provide proper care to a patient, they will have breached their duty of care, creating legal grounds for a neglect lawsuit.
“Placing your loved one in a nursing home doesn’t mean the end of your care for them,” says injury attorney Sean O’Neill of the CA Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers law firm. You will need to be on the lookout for problems that could affect your loved one’s quality of life at the facility.
Signs that indicate that your loved one could be suffering from bedsores include:
- Skin discoloration at pressure points
- Open wounds that leak blood or pus
- Necrosis at pressure points
- Physical pain
- Foul odor
If you notice these symptoms, the first step should be to take pictures of the sores as evidence. If the injuries are not as intensive, you may need to bring them to the caregivers’ attention for correction.
Seek Medical Attention and Get a Lawyer
However, if the injuries are extensive, you may need to contact an attorney for help filing a lawsuit. Besides getting an attorney, it is also important to transfer your loved ones to a facility to get proper treatment for their injuries. Treatment procedures for bedsores depend on the severity of injuries.
For early stages, interventions such as cushioning the area from further damage are all it takes for a bedsore to heal. However, advanced stages can result in many severe complications such as dead tissue and sepsis, which would require advanced treatment. Some cases of bedsores can even result in death.
If you believe a nursing facility is responsible for your loved one’s bedsores, contact a nursing home injury lawyer to help you recover damages. Recoverable damages for a bedsore lawsuit would include the cost of treatment and prescription medicine, pain and suffering, and punitive damages if the nursing home exhibited gross negligence in its care provision.
[Image via Pixels]
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