Neglect and Bed Sores in DC Nursing Homes

Many people do not realize that neglect and neglectful behavior can constitute abuse. In order to constitute abusive neglect under D.C. law, the abuse needs to rise to the level of willful or wanton conduct. Neglect is defined as the failure of the person with the responsibility to provide needed food, clothing, shelter, medical care or supervision to a degree that the individual’s health, safety and well-being are threatened. Abuse is defined as any non-accidental physical injury. Sometimes can result in things like bed sores. Neglect and bed sores in DC nursing homes often go hand in hand. If you or a loved one has sustained bed sores due to neglect, speak with a qualified nursing home abuse attorney that could pursue justice for you.

Explaining Neglect in Nursing Home Abuse Cases

Neglect is considered abusive when it results in a physical injury. The less physically or mentally firm someone is, the more susceptible they are to the consequences of neglect. The biggest example of neglect in a nursing home is a failure to turn residents on their side or providing improper nutrition. Those are the two that are the most common examples. Individuals that are bedridden that are not turned enough develop bed sores or decubitus ulcers.

Causes and Effects of Neglect

Insufficient staffing or staff that is not adequately trained or prepared for the needs of the patient are the most common scenarios leading to neglect and bed sores in DC nursing homes. The most common type of harm resulting from neglect is decubitus ulcers or bed sores. There can also be serious cases or broken skulls and hips from people falling out of their beds. People can also be seriously harmed from walking in and out of the facility if they are not properly monitored. The first thing to do if someone is being neglected is to bring it to the administration’s attention. If the administrator knows about it and fails to act, then they can probably seek legal action.

What is a Bed Sore?

A bed sore is decubitus ulcer caused by pressure on someone’s skin as a result of lack of turning and lack of nutrition. Bed sores are caused by continuous pressure on the same area due to someone’s inability to move around.

The most significant types of harm caused by bed sores include infection and even death. Bed sores can also result in areas of the skin that have permanently diminished feelings or radiating painful sensations. Neglect and bed sores in DC nursing homes are often related and typically indicative of abuse.

Severity of Bed Sores

The severity of bed sores is based on a scale ranging from 1 to 4. Grade 1 bed sores are common, and usually, someone’s skin will just turn red. That would be a decubitus ulcer, or a Stage 1 decubitus ulcer, and that will resolve very quickly. If there is any indication of compromise of skin, that would be a Grade 2 decubitus ulcer. A Grade 3 bed sore is a compromise of skin that reaches a certain depth of the skin that is visual and requires serious medical treatment. A Grade 4 bed sore is an infected ulcer which will also require serious medical care.

Treatment and Prevention of Bed Sores

Treatment options for bed sores include either surgical debridement or wound care. If someone is moved enough in bed, or they are up and about if they are capable they are substantially less likely to develop a bed sore. Adequate nutrition is also a big factor in preventing the occurrence of bed sores. Avoiding neglect and bed sores in DC nursing homes is easy if a nursing home has attentive staff who are dedicated to providing quality care.

Bedsores as an Indicator of Nursing Home Abuse

Rarely, if ever, does a bed sore develop without some neglect. There are occasionally people who are so sick that their skin is so compromised that if one leaves them unturned for 20 minutes their skill will break out. That is an overwhelming minority of people. Neglect and bed sores in DC nursing homes may indicate than an individual is being abused. If a person or their loved ones sustain bed sores as the result of neglect, they should consult a skilled nursing home neglect attorney that could work towards a positive outcome for them.