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Nursing Home Falls & Fractures

By Butler Prather LLP on July 20, 2022

When you have a loved one in a nursing home, you should not have to worry about them falling and breaking any bones. However, fall incidents are not uncommon inside nursing homes, and they often lead to significant injuries that dramatically affect a person’s life. Here, we want to discuss how many nursing home falls are caused by the careless or negligent actions of nursing home staff members. We also want to examine whether or not you may be able to recover compensation on behalf of your loved one after these incidents occur.

What the Data Tells Us About Falls for Elderly Individuals

Data available from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) indicates that approximately 36 million falls are reported amongst older adults every year, and this results in approximately 32,000 deaths annually. These are astounding figures, and all individuals with elderly family members should take note.

More importantly, the CDC states that approximately one out of every five falls for an older adult results in an injury such as a broken bone or head injury. Every year, around 300,000 elderly individuals are hospitalized for hip fractures alone. In addition to broken hips, it is not uncommon for older individuals to sustain broken wrists, fingers, arms, clavicles, ribs, and facial fractures.

Nursing Homes and Their Staff Have Responsibility

Studies indicate that falls are incredibly common in nursing homes, with around half of all nursing home residents falling each year. The data shows that around one out of every three individuals who fall in a nursing home will fall two or more times annually. In a nursing home, one out of every 10 residents who fall sustains a severe injury.

Nursing home administrators and staff members have a responsibility to ensure the safety of their residents. This includes taking precautions to prevent resident falls. Since this is such an overwhelming cause of injuries in nursing homes, staff members should always be attuned to the dangers and risks associated with each particular resident that they serve.

Nursing homes should be aware of some of the most common causes of falls in their facilities, many of which are naturally going to be a part of the equation, including the residents’ age, medical conditions, and medications. However, there are certainly steps that staff members can take to help reduce the risk of falls, including assisting individuals in getting from place to place, ensuring that the living space is not cluttered, making sure there are no wet floors or unstable furniture, etc.

Recovering Compensation for a Resident

If your loved one is in a nursing home and has sustained a fall injury caused by the careless or negligent actions of nursing home staff members, you need to reach out to an Atlanta nursing home abuse attorney as soon as possible. These cases can become complicated, and you can be sure that the nursing home will try and shift some or all of the blame away from the staff members.
A skilled nursing home abuse and neglect lawyer can fully investigate the situation and obtain various types of evidence that can prove what happened. The ultimate goal is to ensure that your loved one receives the care that they need, and this can include compensation for their medical bills as well as their pain and suffering losses.

Posted in: Nursing Home

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