Residents of nursing home and elderly care centers have a right to be free from the use of physical and medication based restraints. Restraints against the elderly can only be used under extreme circumstances including where the life and health the elderly residents as well as employees of the care center may be at risk. Unfortunately, the unwarranted use of physical and drug induced restraints remains a problem facing elderly residents of nursing home and long term care centers across the county. The use of physical restraints can result in bodily harm and emotional trauma. Some of the most common injuries associated with the inconsiderate use of physical restraints against the elderly include
Definition of Physical Restraint
- Bone fractures – fracture to the ribcage, wrists and legs
- Internal bleeding and hemorrhaging
- Blood clots
- Bed sores, pressure sores and abrasions
- Internal organ failure
- Dehydration and malnutrition
- Mental trauma including Post Traumatic Stress
- Death of the victim due to the above mentioned injuries
: Jurisdictions across the United States will have various specific laws defining physical restraints. The most common definition of physical restraints is, “any device, material or equipment attached to or near an elderly individuals body which cannot be controlled or removed easily by the individual, and which intentionally prevents the elderly from free body movements on his or her choice.” According to some studies between 35 to 48% of nursing home residents have undergone some degree of physical restraints. Patient falls account for the most common reason used by nursing home administrators to place elderly residents in restraints.
Nursing Home Neglect & Elder Abuse
– Legal Definition of Elder Abuse
– Nursing Home Medical Malpractice Lawsuits
– Can you sue a Nursing Home
– Physical abuse by residents of nursing homes
– Sue nursing home for elderly financial abuse
– Sued for Abandonment of Elderly Resident
– Elder Abuse Statistics
– Nursing Home Class Action Lawsuit
– Nursing Home Falls Lawsuit
– Spider Bites in Nursing Home
– Nursing Home Isolation Lawsuit
– Caregiver Neglect Attorney
– Elder Abuse Reporting Laws
When Can Restraints be Used – Unlawful Used of Restraints Against Elderly Nursing Home Residents
According to various elder abuse and maltreatment laws physical and or chemical restraints against residents of elderly care centers can only be used have other measure have been exhausted and a full review my a medical doctor has take place. Some of the most steps which should be taken before the application of restraints are as follows.
Nursing Home Accident Resulting in Death – Wrongful Death Lawsuit
- Analysis of the underlying causes of the individuals behavior including psychological and physical manifestations of mental diseases and disorders.
- A full review of the situation by a practicing doctor.
- Documentation of alternatives to retrained previously used and a rationale to use of restraints. Some common alternatives to the use of restraints may include, beds placed lower to the ground, placing an alarm system to warn of potential falls before they take place, treatment for mental issues such as delirium, physical therapy.
- Alerting the individual and their surrogate of the facilities decision to use restraints.
- Restraints must only be implemented by trained individuals.
- Individuals placed in physical restrained must be routinely checked. The time lapse between checkups by staff is based on the specific circumstances of the case.
: Sadly in many instances injured to the elderly result in fatalities. In various jurisdictions across the United States certain relatives of the deceased have a right to file wrongful death lawsuits against parties liable for accidents and injuries resulting in the death of nursing home or elderly care center residents. For more information on wrongful death laws see here…
Victims Right to Compensation
: Victims of nursing home neglect or elderly mistreatment have a right to compensation for all losses sustained. The value of a nursing home neglect lawsuit is dependent upon several significant factors including
- The severity of magnitude of the harm suffered
- Compensation for pain and suffering
- Mental trauma including PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder)
- Availability for punitive damages – in nursing home neglect cases punitive damages can be awarded where the liable parties displays an intent to cause harm or a wanton and reckless disregard for the life and health of a the elderly.
: To contact our attorney on you legal matter feel free to contact our law office toll free (855)385-2529. All consultations regarding your claim are free of charge and confidential.
Liability for Falls in Nursing Homes
Elder Abuse Legal Guide
Preventing and Reducing the Use of Restraints