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Nursing Homes Abuse Blog By Jonathan Rosenfeld

Nursing Home Staff

Staff in Nursing HomesThe Importance of Staffing Levels in Nursing Home Care

Every nursing home must maintain adequate staff levels to meet the daily medication, nutritional, exercise, activity and other needs of residents. Without adequate nursing home staff levels, the quality of care that is offered to residents suffers as a result. Residents may be injured by overworked, fatigued or improperly trained staff in a facility that has nursing home understaffing issues. If you suspect that a loved one has been injured as a result of inadequate staffing at a nursing home facility, then nursing home lawyers are here to help you. This is a common issue that has become a nationwide epidemic, and legal recourse is available to family members with loved ones injured as a result of inadequate staffing in nursing homes.

Is Your Nursing Home Following Federal Laws Governing Staffing Levels in Nursing Home Care?

Federal nursing staffing laws require that a nursing home facility must provide “sufficient nursing staff” to provide care for the “highest practicable physical, mental and psychosocial well-being of each resident.” This standard of care is also determined by the care plan that is created for each resident in a nursing home facility. Family members should always have access to the medical records of patients, and a request may be made in writing to nursing home administrators. A health care facility must respond in 30 days to your request for medical records. Otherwise, the health care facility must provide you with written notice of the reasons for why your request has been denied within 90 days. Family members may be interested in reading through the care plan of their loved one in a nursing home so that they can make sure nursing staff is seeing to the needs of a loved one.

Effects of Failure to Maintain Minimum Staffing Levels in Nursing Homes

There are far-ranging effects when a nursing home fails to maintain minimum staffing. Residents are always the ones who are harmed by nursing home understaffing. If the minimum ratio of employees to residents is not met in a nursing home, then it is likely that the following may occur:
• Residents become injured in falls
• Residents develop bed sores
• The quality of residents’ lives suffer
• Residents do not receive proper nutrition
• Omissions in administering medications may occur
• Facilities may become unsanitary
• Patient belongings may remain unwashed
• Administrators may use chemical restraints to control the behavior of residents and prevent complaints from being communicated

Poor nursing home wages can also cause employees to lash out on residents in facilities. Employees may feel discouraged by poor nursing home wages, and this is another factor that can lead to negligent or abusive behavior by employees.

Nationwide Statistics on Minimum Staffing Levels in Nursing Homes

A 2008 University of California-San Francisco research study revealed the many deficiencies that nursing homes have in regards to maintaining sufficient nursing staff. States like Wyoming had as many as 15 percent of all nursing homes that failed to provide adequate staffing levels for residents’ needs. As a result of inadequate staffing levels, other areas of nursing home management suffer. Food sanitation is one area that requires adequate nursing home staff. In 2008, 36 percent of all nursing homes were discovered to have poor food sanitation. States like Delaware had an astonishing rate of 75 percent of nursing homes with poor food sanitation. Poor food sanitation can lead to illnesses in residents, and it is important that nursing homes maintain adequate staff to properly prepare food for residents.

Know Your Loved Ones’ Legal Rights with Help from Nursing Home Lawyers

As you learn more about your loved one’s legal rights in a nursing home, you may feel compelled to get in touch with a nursing home lawyer. You can schedule an initial consultation to discuss any current injuries or deficiencies that you may believe are impacting the quality of your loved one’s life.


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Posted in Nursing Home Staff

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Posted in Nursing Home Abuse, Nursing Home Staff

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Posted in Medication Errors, Neglect, Nursing Home Staff

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Posted in Litigation, Nursing Home Abuse, Nursing Home Staff

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Posted in Nursing Home Staff, Whistleblower / Qui Tam Claims

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Posted in Abuse In Chicago Nursing Homes & Other Communities Within Illinois, Nursing Home Staff

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Posted in Nursing Home Staff

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