Assisted living facilities in Massachusetts are supposed to make sure that their residents that need supervision are not allowed to wander off unattended. Failure to do so can be grounds for a Boston nursing home neglect lawsuit because, unfortunately, wandering, also known as elopement, can cause serious injuries and even deaths.
Many nursing home residents suffer from dementia, Alzheimer’s or some other type of illness that can make them a danger to themselves should they wander on or off the nursing home grounds on their own. A patient who wanders may not know how to get back and he/she may become disoriented or confused. If the assisted living facility resident elopes at night, it could be hours before anyone even knows that he/she is gone. By then, the patient may have been involved in a Massachusetts fall accident and suffered serious head, back, or hip injuries, developed hypothermia, gotten hurt in a pedestrian accident, drowned in someone’s pool or another body of water, or become the victim of a violent crime, such as murder or rape.
There is no reason why a patient should be able to wander out of a nursing home without workers’ noticing. Wandering/elopement is preventable. Steps that assisted living facilities can take to prevent patient wandering:
• Hire enough staff members • Closely monitoring of patients who are known risks for wandering because of their health issues • Install and activate bells and alarms on doors • Lock doors or windows that patients can exit through • Install working surveillance cameras on the property • Hire security guards • Properly train staff on wandering prevention
Contact our Boston nursing home abuse and neglect law firm to request your free case evaluation.
Nursing home compare, Medicare.gov
Dangerous wandering: elopements of older adults with dementia from long-term care facilities, PubMed.gov
More Blog Posts:
Winter Weather Combined with Boston Nursing Home Neglect Can Cause Some Patients to Get Very Sick, Boston Injury Lawyer Blog, January 22, 2011
Preventing Massachusetts Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect: Are Assisted Living Facilities Doing Enough When Screening Employees Before Hiring Them?, Boston Injury Lawyer Blog, April 28, 2011
Threat of a Massachusetts Nursing Home Neglect and Abuse Lawsuit May Not Be Enough to Improve Facility Care, Boston Injury Lawyer Blog, March 31, 2011
Working with an experienced Boston injury lawyer can increase your chances of obtaining the maximum financial recovery possible.