In Illinois nursing homes, staffing is often poor. There are often just not enough people to handle the needs of all residents. This can lead to bad nursing home care and even serious injuries or death to residents. While actual physical injuries are quite common, they are quite frequently made worse by the facility not transferring the resident quickly enough. This is known as a failure to timely transfer or failure to timely treat, and sometimes it can make bad situations even worse. There are generally about 4 types of cases we see.
- Failure to identify/discover an injury. These cases occur when the nursing home is so inadequately staffed that the nurses don’t even get to the resident until it is already too late. Perhaps a resident has fallen from bed and fractured a hip. This is a life-threatening and potentially fatal injury for many seniors, especially those who are very frail or weak already. Without adequate staffing levels and without proper resident checks being performed, a senior could lay unattended for hours prior to being discovered.
- Failure to timely treat an injury. In the example above, the problem was not finding out about the injury soon enough. But sometimes nurses in these facilities will identify the problem but due to poor staffing, poor training, or apathy, the injuries are not treated seriously enough and may become worse. Consider a patient who has a painful bedsore that is not healing. Some nurses may try to cover up the issue or conceal it to avoid the extra work that may be involved.
- Failure to report injuries. Consider a resident who has an infection. Staff discover the infection but opt not to pass along the injury to a physician. Perhaps the nursing staff feel they can handle it and don’t want to both an already overworked medical director.
- Failure to timely transfer to the hospital. Finally, in some cases, nursing home staff will know of an injury, properly report it to the physician, and maybe even provide some basic care on site, but for one reason or another, they opt not to transfer the resident to the hospital. In some situations, this may be due to a mistaken belief that the injury is not serious enough to transfer the resident. More sinister reasons may be a desire to keep a full head count on the census for financial reasons.
Suspect a Failure to Treat or Transfer Injury?
If you have a close friend or relative living in a nursing home in southern Illinois, then you need to be vigilant and keep watch over how they are treated and not any new marks, bruises, or injuries you notice. Do they have a foul odor? Notice any bedsores or wounds? Is the resident in visible pain? Ask questions, and be sure to keep notes of all conversations with nursing home staff. If the stories don’t add up, or if you discover that your loved one was hurt in a nursing home, yet it feels like the facility and its staff did little to take care of the resident, you should call Crossroad Legal today. We consult closely with some of the best medical experts in the country, and they are often able to help us give clients peace of mind and closure, knowing exactly what happened to a loved one. In some cases, the mistreatment may be so bad that it rises to the level of abuse or neglect. If so, Illinois law provides a wide range of options for elderly nursing home residents and their families. In fact, you may even be entitled to substantial monetary compensation for the injuries.
To learn more about nursing home abuse and neglect in southern Illinois and to find out if you may have a case against the nursing home, call Crossroad Legal today. It’s a free call, and we never get paid unless you do. Consultations for elder abuse and nursing home injury cases are always free, and there is no risk and no obligation. But Illinois has strict deadlines on taking action, and if you miss a deadline, your rights may forever be lost. So, call (618) 515-5555 today, and schedule your own free no-risk confidential consultation with our attorney.
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All consultations are free of charge. Effective July 1, 2023, our office performs all initial consultations via phone or video chat, as we find this allows us to help people who may not be able to travel after their injuries. However, in-person appointments may be scheduled in advance. Our firm does not do walk-ins, as we cannot guarantee that the attorney will be in the office at that time. Please see our “Crossroad Pledge” for more information about how Crossroad Legal is different than other firms you may have seen.