Is The Nursing Home Responsible For A Loved One's Fall?
Even with the best care, accidents in a nursing home are still possible. When your loved one is injured in a fall, whether the nursing home and its staff can be held accountable depends on several factors. If you are considering legal action for a fall, here is what you need to know.
When Is the Nursing Home Liable?
Although the fall might have been an accident, there is a possibility that it was preventable. If the nursing home failed to take steps to ensure the safety of your loved one, it could be held legally responsible for the damages that resulted from the fall.
For instance, if the nursing home failed to assess your loved one's fall risk when he or she was admitted and periodically throughout the stay, it could be liable. With a risk assessment, the nursing home staff can learn what needs to be done to lower the chances that your loved one could fall and suffer an injury. Without the proper assessment, precautions, such as using a mobility aid, might be overlooked.
The nursing home could also be responsible if the staff failed to follow the suggestions that were outlined in the risk assessment. For instance, if the staff did not encourage your loved one to use grab bars to get in and out of the bathtub, the nursing home could be responsible for the injuries.
Other situations in which the nursing home might be responsible include a lack of staffing available to provide the necessary care, environmental safety hazards, and improperly trained staffing.
Your attorney can help with assessing the situation and determining exactly why the nursing home should be held accountable for the circumstances that led to the fall.
What Can You Do?
One of the first actions you can take is to ensure your loved one is receiving the proper care for his or her injuries. Although the nursing home will likely want to use a medical care provider it contracts with to care for your loved one, you should also have him or her examined by a provider of your choice.
You also need to gather as many facts about what happened. If there were witnesses to what happened, collect their names and contact information. The more people you have to back up your loved one's account of what happened, the better for your case.
In addition to this, you should consider contacting the state's regulatory agency. Depending on the circumstances, it is possible that the nursing home violated a state regulation in failing to provide the care your loved one deserved. If so, the nursing home could face serious consequences. To learn more, contact a law firm like Reed Law.