State Orders Immediate Compliance With Pressure Sore Prevention Guidelines; Nursing Home Cited

One state's department of health has ordered immediate changes at a nursing home and rehabilitation center for continued failures to track and treat bedsores (pressure sores, pressure ulcers, decubitus ulcers) and reposition patients. Records show one patient who required the technique every two hours to prevent bedsores was often neglected. The following chart shows the incidences of neglect:

Month

Number of worker shifts

 

May 2009

93 shifts

Neglected 41 times

June 2009

90 shifts

Neglected 60 times

July 2009

93 shifts

Neglected 13 times

August 2009 (inspection was mid-month)

21 shifts

Neglected 8 times

The facility is now working with the state and released a statement to the local television news station, "Right now our focus is on our patients. We have made significant changes at the facility and will continue to work with all staff to ensure every patient is receiving the best possible care."

Under the compliance order, the nursing home must now hire an independent consultant, contract with a patients safety organization, make the results of the report available and contact all patients. Health officials say this case shows the importance of annual inspections. For more, read the story.

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Robert W. Carter, Jr. is a Virginia attorney whose law practice is dedicated to protecting the rights of the victims of nursing home and assisted living neglect and abuse in Richmond, Roanoke, Norfolk, Lynchburg, Danville, Charlottesville, and across Virginia.

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