Physical abuse is not the only thing you may have to worry about happening to your elderly parent when it comes to misconduct in Florida nursing homes. Another common cause of harm is medical neglect, which results from being indifferent toward patient care, failing to act on patients’ behalf or neglecting patients. Although the harm may not be as intentional as it is with abuse, it can lead to just as severe consequences for the victims. These five actions are only some of the ways a Florida nursing home can commit medical neglect, likely giving you grounds for a lawsuit.
1. Failing to give medication
An obvious standard of care is giving residents their medications to manage their health conditions. Neglecting to do so can also include not providing medical aids such as walkers, hearing aids, glasses or dentures.
2. Giving the wrong medication
It is crucial that attendants double-check that they are giving the right medications to the right patients. Giving the wrong medication also entails giving the wrong dosage. Both under-dosage and over-dosage can be fatal.
3. Prescribing medication without the family’s knowledge
You and the rest of the family should be involved in all medical decisions and should know when there are any changes, including new prescription medications. This helps you ensure your parent receives medication and watch for side effects. You can also make sure that the facility is aware of any allergies or adverse reactions to medications your parent may have.
4. Delaying medical care
Delay of medical care may be unintentional due to understaffing. When attendants have too many patients to care for, they may easily not notice signs of medical need, such as dehydration. Nevertheless, nursing homes are responsible for providing adequate care to residents and training for staff according to federal and state standards.
5. Failing to obtain medical care in emergencies
Even worse than delaying medical treatment is not obtaining it at all. A nursing home must have and use immediate access to medical care in an emergency to protect patient lives.
The best course of action against any form of neglect or abuse is prevention. Use resources to help you select a nursing home in Florida for your elderly parent. Visit regularly and watch out for signs of abuse or neglect for the sake of your parent and of the other residents as well. If you discover any abuse, meet with a personal injury attorney to find out what you can do.