Articles Posted in Nursing Home or Extended Care

Image result for elderlyNew data shows that thousands of senior residents of nursing homes who are physically and mentally incapacitated suffer from what is known as “self neglect” – they are unable to look after their basic needs and have no caregivers to help them with the same.

According to the New England Center for Investigative Reporting, the data comes from nursing homes across the country, and finds that overall, state investigators across the country completed 173,000 investigations into cases of elder abuse  last year alone. Out of these, 235,000 cases were identified as elder abuse cases, and this included self neglect. Overall, the cases of self neglect numbered more than 142,000.

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Image result for elder abuseSeniors may be at a much higher risk of abuse and neglect when they live in for-profit nursing homes, compared to non-profit facilities.

New research published in the Gerontology journal recently indicates that residents of for-profit nursing home receive substandard care compared to residents of non-profit nursing facilities. According to the researchers, their study focused on more than 1,100 residents above the age of 60 who were treated at hospitals for the consequences of poor care between 2007 and 2011. Their study found that patients who were also residents of for –profit nursing homes were more likely to show up at the hospital for treatment of stage 3 and 4 bed sores, dehydration and broken feeding tubes and catheters. Residents of for-profit facilities were also more likely to suffer the consequences of improper or irregular delivery for their medications.

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Image result for nursing homeA new report shows that most nursing homes often operate under lower staffing levels than they have reported to the government, placing residents at risk of abuse and neglect.

The report was released by Kaiser Health News, and was based on Medicare data. The agency only recently began collecting such staffing data on more than 14,000 such nursing facilities across the country. The data clearly indicates that there are fluctuations in staffing on a day-to-day basis in most nursing homes. Weekends tend to be critically understaffed, with large percentages of staffing shortages reported over the weekend.

The fact that nursing home staffing levels may not be consistent throughout the year has only now come to light after Medicare recently began collecting this important information. It is a suspicion, however, that Indianapolis nursing home abuse attorneys have had for several years.

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Image result for hearing lossHearing trouble can mean not just difficulty hearing things properly, but also an increased risk of accidents caused because you’re unable to hear auditory accident cues.

Many seniors suffer from hearing loss as they get older. For many of these persons, hearing loss may be a natural part of aging, and may lead to social difficulties and inconvenience, and not much more. However, according to the results of a new study, hearing loss can actually be dangerous because it can impact a senior citizen’s ability to drive safely.

According to the researchers, hearing is a key sense that can help alert an individual to potential dangers in his environment. On a busy road, that could mean an oncoming car that can be heard, but may not be seen in time. For a pedestrian, it could mean being alerted to the sound of an approaching vehicle.  When hearing isn’t fine-tuned and sharp, injury risks increase.

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Inurse, nursingAn overwhelming majority of nurses report having to care for too many patients, and not having enough time to perform their duties efficiently and safely.

The annual survey of nurses in Massachusetts found that the biggest and most significant challenge for registered nurses in providing quality patient care was caring for too many patients during a single shift. About 77% of the nurses admitted that the strain placed on them in having to care for too many patients at a given time, definitely impacted their ability to perform their duties safely.

These challenges could also have serious and life-threatening consequences for patients. Approximately 77% of the registered nurses who participated in the survey admitted that frequent medication errors were the direct result of them caring for too many patients in a single shift. In fact, 72% of the nurses claimed that patient readmission was a very frequent and common result of their caring for too many patients during a single shift. About 64% of the nurses admitted that such unsafe assignments were directly linked to patient injury or harm.

disabled-1794484_1920-300x259Choosing a nursing home for a loved one can be a difficult process. You want a nursing home where your loved one will not just be comfortable, but also safe and well cared for. Choosing a nursing home where he or she will be all of these things is not easy. Unfortunately, in some instances, elders are mistreated, abused and neglected in some of Indiana’s elder care facilities.

If you are currently looking for a nursing home for your loved one, ask yourself these questions and analyze the answers before you make a decision:

  • Does the facility meet safety standards? A hygienic and healthy environment is key to keeping your loved one secure. Look around the facility, and check if it looks clean and well maintained. Does it smell clean, or does it smell musty or stale? Overall, does the facility have a healthy, friendly and appealing environment that will make a resident feel at home?

wheelchair-1230101_1920-300x169The elderly and vulnerable in nursing homes are being sexually abused and raped at a rate that is higher than we could have imagined. Those shocking facts come from a new report released by CNN, which finds that many incidents of rape involving elderly members of nursing homes are not even being prosecuted.

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Radiologists are in a position to identify signs of injury in seniors, and this could assist them in detecting elder abuse.

This finding came from a recent study that was published in the American Journal of Roentgenology. Radiologists have long been relied on for their unique access to signs of child abuse, and are often called on to identify signs of such abuse, but the same hasn’t been done in the case of elder abuse or nursing home abuse. That could be because signs of nursing home abuse are harder to identify than child abuse. However, researchers now say that it is very evident that diagnostic radiologists are often in a position to identify injuries that may be consistent with elder abuse.

Certainly, there are challenges when radiologists attempt to identify signs of elder abuse. For instance, an old fracture in a child may indicate neglect or abuse, but in a senior adult, a fracture may not mean the same thing. Many senior do suffer falls, and the risk of a fall increases with a senior’s age.

longterm careAbout 2 million Americans are living in some kind of nursing facility. When family members decide to admit a loved one into these nursing homes, they expect that their loved one will be taken care of, and that their needs will be met.  Unfortunately, residents at these facilities are very often subjected to abuse and neglect. If your family member currently lives in a nursing home, it is important to visit them frequently, and look for signs that all is not well.

In fact, there are often visible signs of nursing home abuse that should alert you to the possibility that your loved one is not being taken care of as well as you believe, and as well as they deserve.  One should look for bedsores or pressure ulcers as a sign that the loved one is not being very mobile.  A loved one may also be able to pick up signs of neglect if the loved one shows signs of a poor appetite, sudden weight loss, poor sanitation, and poor hygiene.

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bed.jpgNew research seems to contradict earlier findings about the usefulness of hospital bed alarms in reducing the risk of fall accidents involving patients. The research finds that hospital bed alarms don’t significantly reduce the risk of a person suffering a fall accident.

Many hospitals have invested in hospital bed alarms to reduce the risk of falls when the patient is trying to get out of bed. Reducing the risk of fall accidents has become a top priority for hospitals, especially since Medicare announced that it will no longer reimburse facilities for these falls and related costs, because they should never have occurred in the first place. Therefore, the number of hospitals that have installed bed alarms has increased.

However, the researchers found that there were no significant benefits from this practice. They documented fall accidents that occurred among patients in 16 medical as well as surgical units at a hospital in Tennessee. Eight of those units were designated as “usual care,” while the other eight units were designated as “intervention units.”
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