Articles

Nursing Home Litigation

By: Attorney Thomas R. Smith

Given the changes in life span, nursing homes and assisted living are an ever increasing home address for our population as it ages. This has also raised the need to look at the adequacy and reasonableness of the care they deliver to a population with very specific needs and repeating vulnerabilities.

The relative reduced mobility of nursing home residents increases the risk for bed sores, lung problems and orthopedic [muscle and bone} injuries. The nursing homes seeking and accepting these patients do it with knowledge of the needs of those they take in, with the representation they are designed for and expert in the needs of the elderly and bedridden.

When they choose to operate this type of facility, they assume the responsibility to do it correctly, in terms of staffing, facilities and medical coverage. They are no longer places where the infirm go to pass away. They go with the understanding that it is a place of expertise, staffing, and facilities, geared to the specific needs of the population it invites and accepts money to house and provide acceptable levels of care.

Bed sores [decubitus ulcers] lung problems [pneumonia], bone and muscle problems, and infection are all known to occur increasingly in an older, immobile population. Unfortunately, an increasing level of litigation has developed around the failures of these facilities to deliver on their representations of competence and expertise.

When this happens, the medical records and facility practices, procedures, and adequacy of staffing and staff conduct, must be evaluated by both nurse, doctor and nursing home experts as to what was done versus what was required to be done.

This is what the experienced medical malpractice or nursing home malpractice attorney brings to the table: Know the questions that need answering and where to get the answers.

Learn more about Nursing Home Negligence

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