When residents in a nursing home move about the facility without a clear destination or purpose and without awareness of potential dangers, they are at greater risk of sustaining injuries.
This act of wandering especially happens with residents suffering from cognitive impairments, such as those caused by dementia.
Hence, caretakers and staff should closely supervise the residents to prevent them from wandering. Unfortunately, due to reasons such as inadequate staffing or negligence, some nursing homes fail to avoid resident wandering, which results in personal injuries.
Connecting wandering and resident injuries
Below are some injuries residents can suffer from if they are left wandering in and out of the nursing home premises:
- Falls: Wandering can result in falls causing serious injuries, including fractures, lacerations, or head injuries. This happens when residents encounter uneven surfaces, wet floors or other obstacles in their path.
- Access to hazardous areas: If a resident wanders into areas that are not safe, such as stairwells, kitchens or maintenance rooms, they can be exposed to various hazards that can lead to injury.
- Malnutrition or dehydration: Residents who wander may miss meals or not drink enough fluids, leading to malnutrition or dehydration, which can lead to further injuries or medical issues.
- Potentially unsafe interaction with other residents: Wandering residents might inadvertently enter another resident’s personal space, leading to confusion or aggression and potential physical altercations that can cause injuries.
- Elopement: Wandering can lead to elopement or when a resident leaves the nursing home premises entirely. This can expose them to the road dangers and extreme weather, among others, which can result in injuries or even fatalities.
Injuries in nursing homes can leave victims and their families with physical, emotional and financial burdens. An experienced personal injury attorney can be a pivotal ally during these trying times.
By meticulously investigating the incident, gathering evidence and navigating the complexities of personal injury law, an attorney can help you hold the right people accountable and secure the compensation necessary for your loved one’s recovery and care.