Everyday activities may seem simple enough, but for a nursing home resident with mobility issues or cognitive impairment, it can mean the difference between going about their day and suffering a severe injury. A failure to provide help with everyday activities may be considered nursing home neglect when it proves avoidable and causes a resident to suffer an injury or illness.
Some examples of everyday activities include:
- Brushing your teeth
- Going to the restroom
- Getting dressed
- Bathing and grooming
While an average adult does not even consider these actions as part of their day, they can become obstacles for elderly adults who cannot live fully independently. It is for this very reason that families place their loved ones in the care of nursing homes when they can no longer look after their senior loved one.
If your loved one suffered injuries due to a caregiver’s failure to provide help with everyday activities, you may qualify to seek compensation for any economic and noneconomic losses that follow. An example of an injury in this case may occur after a fall or choking incident. As the elderly already live with compromised immune systems due to age, they can suffer severe medical consequences following personal injuries.
Obligations of Nursing Homes and Caregivers
While some residents maintain a level of independence, others suffer from dementia or take medications that lead to dizziness or imbalance. Some residents are bedridden and require assistance with every aspect of normal life.
Under the H.R.3545 – Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1987, nursing homes have an obligation to meet the basic needs of all of their residents, and these needs extend to everyday activities like bathing, eating, and dressing.
A lack of care in regard to an everyday need may signal something more than a simple oversight. The failure to provide help with everyday activities may be considered nursing home neglect when a pattern emerges and leads to a resident’s injury.
For a free legal consultation, call 800-712-9119
Injuries Stemming From Everyday Activities
A variety of everyday activities can go wrong when an elderly nursing home resident attempts them alone. If a caregiver neglects their duties in any way, it can result in the failure to meet a resident’s basic needs, or worse.
The Risk of Falling
In the absence of a caregiver, a resident who needs to use the restroom may attempt to get up and walk on their own. If this resident has issues with stability, they can easily trip and fall on their way to the restroom.
A fall, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), often constitutes major injuries for elderly adults, and some lead to fatalities. A hip fracture can challenge an elderly adult to a long recovery, and they may develop chronic conditions due to their injuries.
The Risk of Malnutrition
Another reason the failure to provide help with everyday activities would be considered nursing home neglect is that it can lead to malnutrition in a resident. Some residents cannot eat independently and require assistance when eating, whether it involves cutting their food into small portions or encouraging them to eat.
If a caregiver consistently fails to properly feed a resident, they will eventually develop a nutritional deficit. On the other hand, force-feeding can traumatize a resident or lead to an incident of choking, according to the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI).
Malnutrition can cause serious illnesses for an elderly individual, and in some cases, a patient does not recover. According to the Mayo Clinic, malnutrition can also lead to a weakened immune system and frail bones, which increases the risk of experiencing a fall.
Seek Legal Help
If you are wondering if a failure to provide help with everyday activities is considered nursing home neglect, you can seek the counsel of a nursing home abuse and neglect lawyer. Ben Crump Law, PLLC offers free, no-obligation case evaluations to help you determine your legal options.
If your loved one suffered injuries due to a failure on a caregiver’s part, you may have grounds to take legal action. Potential compensation for a nursing home neglect case may cover your loved one’s medical expenses and pain and suffering.
Allow a lawyer to handle your legal case while you focus on your loved one’s recovery. Call Ben Crump Law, PLLC at 800-959-1444.