When nursing home residents suffer from bedsores, also known as pressure ulcers, it is almost always a sign that some sort of neglect, nursing home negligence or nursing home abuse has happened to that resident. Bedsores occur when an area of skin supports an unusual amount of weight for an extended period of time. While normal movement and regular repositioning of one’s body generally prevents the formation of bedsores, some nursing home residents have conditions or paralysis that makes them unable to move or reposition their own bodies, and thus they must rely on nursing home staff members to periodically reposition them.
Bedsores can form on the bodies of nursing home residents who are bed or chair bound, as these residents often have difficulty or are completely incapable of periodically repositioning their bodies to redistribute their weight. Nursing home staff members have a duty to help these residents so that bedsores do not form.
Prevention Is The Best Medicine
Bedsores have the potential to be immensely painful and run a high risk of becoming infected. When bedsores get worse, they can be costly to treat and can require a lot of care. That is why preventing bedsores in the first place is the best approach. Nursing home staff members are trained to help residents with known issues with self-mobility, such as residents who have mobility issues after a stroke, and to move or reposition these residents every so many hours in order to prevent pressure ulcers from forming on the skin.
When Does A Bedsore Rise To The Level of Abuse Or Neglect
There are some instances where the development of a bedsore might be expected. For example, a nursing home resident who is obese with diabetes may very well develop a bedsore or diabetic ulcer despite nursing home staff’s best efforts to prevent it, simply due to the resident’s medical conditions in conjunction with their weight. However, there is little to no excuse for a less than 100-pound resident to develop a bedsore while living in a nursing home.
Some nursing homes do not have enough staff members on hand to provide adequate care and attention to each resident in a nursing home. Some nursing homes have poorly trained workers, or staff members who feel that they are not paid enough to properly care for residents. Regardless, nursing homes have a duty to provide reasonable care to their residents, and failing to do so is abuse or neglect.