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Inadequate staff leads to nursing home abuse and neglect

One of the more common causes of nursing home abuse and neglect is the lack of adequate staffing. Without enough staff members on duty, caregivers find themselves in a situation where they can barely provide the minimal care to the most demanding patients. Meanwhile, patients who are lying quietly get ignored. That can lead to problems like bed sores, breathing and hygiene issues and worse.

However, some nursing homes don't seem to care that they're understaffed. They are focused on making the most out of their facility, which means that they'll take a patient knowing that they can't provide adequate care because they don't want to leave the facility with an empty bed.

A Charleston man learned the horrors of this problem when he left his wife in the care of a nursing home that assured him that they not only understood her various medical needs but were up to the task of caring for them. They weren't, and the patient died.

Her husband is now suing the nursing care facility, individual caregivers both named and unnamed, the parent company that provided staffing and the nursing home's parent company for his wife's wrongful death.

Currently, there's little stability inside the average nursing home. Heavy workloads, high personal liabilities and stress lead to a turnover rate that ranges from 50 percent to 100 percent yearly -- meaning that the average nursing home replaces half or more of its staff every year.

The lack of continuity in care is only part of the problem. At any given point, half the staff is already looking for other work, which means that they aren't likely to be as focused on their patients as they should be. Many nursing homes are focused more on keeping patients quiet rather than taking adequate care of them.

If your loved one has suffered from nursing home neglect, contact an attorney as soon as possible to find out what your legal options are.

Source: West Virginia Record, "Man sues AMFM for nursing home negligence," Kyla Asbury, May 31, 2017

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