Nursing homes cannot always be counted on to follow care plans. Although the plans are put in place to ensure the highest quality of care for residents, they are sometimes disregarded by nursing homes. Factors like staff turnover and understaffed facilities result in neglect and patients receiving substandard care.
What Is a Nursing Home Care Plan?
A nursing home care plan is a document that contains the individualized requirements of a resident. It identifies the risk factors and needs specific to the resident. Some of the information it highlights includes medical history, treatment goals, action plans, and progress tracking.
Evaluation of a Nursing Home Care Plan
Nursing homes should monitor the health of residents and adjust their care plans accordingly. That helps promote the best level of care to the residents. The reviewed care plans also need to match up to the set federal and state standards. In Illinois, the rights for residents are provided by the Illinois Nursing Home Care Act and the Federal Nursing Home Reform Act.
When the Nursing Home Care Plan Is Not Followed
Failure to follow nursing home care plans is a significant cause of nursing home injuries and deaths. For example, the care plan of a resident who has been identified as being at risk of falling will call for interventions to prevent him or her from falling. The resident can fall if those interventions are not taken.
In one case, an 84-year-old woman was awarded $6.5 million after sustaining a fall injury in a nursing home. Her nursing care plan called for the use of a bed alarm, but no alarm was in use at the time of her fall.
High employee turnover, understaffing, and failure to supervise are some of the factors that increase the chances of a patient’s nursing care plan not being followed. Some signs may indicate a care plan is not being followed. These include:
- New bedsores
- Sudden behavior change
- Bruises or fractures
- Unexpected hospitalization
People who suspect that a nursing home’s failure to follow the care plan led to their loved one’s injuries, deterioration in health, or wrongful death can seek help from a nursing home abuse lawyer. The lawyer can help uncover proof of negligence, mistreatment, or abuse. Nursing home residents and their family members have the right to file complaints and seek legal recourse without retribution.