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The demand remains high for long-term health center staff, and nursing homes are often left shorthanded, leading to serious issues and risks for residents.

A report published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society found that some nursing staff agencies fail to perform background checks, and results in the hiring of employees with no experience, histories of criminal activity, and drug and alcohol abuse.

Such factors may contribute to subsequent elder abuse or Ohio nursing home abuse. One study concluded that 90 percent of nursing homes may hire staff with a criminal record.

Of the hiring agencies involved in the above study, only about half conducted federally-approved criminal background checks. Several failed to subject employees to drug tests. The failure to perform drug checks is concerning considering all the medications around nursing homes that could potentially be stolen or abused by staff members.

Investigators found registered sex offenders working in nursing homes and staff with criminal convictions in crimes such as burglary and forgery. Forty-three states require nursing homes to conduct criminal background check, but only ten states require both a state and FBI background check that would detect convictions in multiple states.

Joe Lyon is a highly-rated Cincinnati, Ohio personal injury attorney and nursing home neglect lawyer with experience in injuries and deaths due to Ohio nursing home understaffing and neglect.

Mr. Lyon has represented plaintiffs nationwide in a wide variety of nursing home negligence, wrongful death and injury claims.

Patients Suffer from Nursing Home Understaffing

The Journal of the National Medical Association found that up to 90 percent of nursing homes are understaffed. As a result, patients suffer the consequences and suffer more infections, injuries and preventable deaths.

Understaffing inevitably leads to patient neglect. When facilities have too few workers, the patients don’t get the attention they require, their medical conditions go unnoticed, and their emotional health may deteriorate.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommends federal standards for patients to receive a minimum of two hours of personal care each day. The agency says that over 50 percent of nursing homes currently fall below that proposed standard.

The understaffing problem at American nursing homes is both attributed to the fact that employers struggle to find high-quality nurses and that cost-cutting measures affect the quality of care. When nursing homes cut labor costs for a larger bottom line, they tend to hire staff members with less training.

Many trained medical professionals also prefer to work in other health care environments, so it is difficult to retain the best staff. Yet, long-term care facilities have a responsibility to care for patients and prevent neglect and abuse.

Nursing Home Understaffing Linked to Abuse

When nursing homes facilities are understaffed it is the residents who suffer the most. If your loved one resides in an understaffed nursing home, be aware that serious risks are involved. If a resident is particularly immobile in a nursing home, they must rely on staff to help them in daily functions like using the bathroom or bathing regularly.

Bed sores are a major concern when there is a lack of mobility. Staff members who are overworked are also more likely to miss signs of infection, which then leads to delayed diagnoses, treatment and complications. If you have a loved one in a nursing home and have concerns about understaffing and neglect, consider contacting an experienced attorney.

A high number of neglected patients end up developing life-threatening infections, dehydration and other serious conditions that could be prevented if homes are staffed properly. Neglect in understaffed nursing homes is likely to lead to the following situations:

  • Immobility-related ConditionsBed sores, muscle atrophy and skin infections can develop when a facility is understaffed.
  • Fall injuries—understaffed nursing homes cannot monitor patients and more fall injuries occur.
  • Emotional Neglect—understaffed centers risk patients’ physical well-being as well as emotional and mental deterioration without the attention residents need.
  • Abuse—an overworked staff could experience stress that leads to more instances of losing tempers and abusing patients.
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A Voice for Those who have suffered 

Why are these cases important?

The transition into a nursing home is difficult for both patients and their families. It is a sacrifice, and residents rely heavily on the compassion and competence of nursing home staff and management to provide the best care possible. When nursing homes fail to provide the professional care they promise, and injuries and deaths result, they may be held accountable by Ohio law.

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Questions about Nursing Home Neglect Cases

What is nursing home neglect litigation?

Nursing home neglect has been a serious issue for decades now, and the management of facilities must be held accountable when instances of negligence affect your family.

If an Ohio nursing home fails to provide the professional care they have advertised, and patient injuries and deaths result, the companies may be held responsible in Ohio courts. Large settlements have resulted from the families of victims filing injury claims against Diversicare, Genesis, ManorCare and Laurel homes.

What are common types of nursing home abuse?

Nursing home neglect injuries may result from understaffing, underqualified staff, bad management and poor communication. Abuse and neglect can result in dangerous bedsores and other serious infections. Common types of nursing home abuse may include:

Does a fall in the nursing home count?

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates approximately 1,800 nursing home residents die from dangerous falls each year. Residents who survive falls may sustain hip or head injuries which can lead to permanent disabilities.

Because of the new surroundings and staff neglect, many newly admitted nursing home residents will suffer a fall shortly after their arrival. Understaffing is a big factor in these injuries, and the management of nursing homes have a responsibility to prevent falls and accidents.

What about Bed Sores?

Bedsores, also known as pressure sores, pressure ulcers, and skin lesions can be very painful and lead to more serious health problems if not treated promptly. Nursing home staff are well aware that patients confined to beds need to be turned regularly to reduce the risk of developing ulcers. However, when nursing homes are understaffed or fail to properly attend to residents, patients suffer the consequences.

Bedsores, also called decubitus ulcers, are injuries to skin and underlying tissue from prolonged skin pressure. Bedsores commonly develop on bony areas of the body, such as the heels, ankles, hips and tailbone. Common Contributing Factors for Bedsores:

  • Pressure—bedsores are caused by pressure against the skin that limits blood flow to the skin. Blood flow is essential to delivering oxygen and nutrients to tissue.
  • Friction—skin rubbing against clothing or bedding makes skin more vulnerable to injury.
  • Immobility
  • Overmedicated patients
  • Understaffing at nursing homes
  • Lack of sensory perception
  • Malnutrition
  • Dehydration
  • Nursing home neglect
  • Medical conditions affecting blood flow—diabetes and vascular disease

People most at risk of bedsores have medical conditions that limit their ability to change positions on their own. Bedsores can develop quickly. Most sores heal with treatment, but some are more severe and lead to serious drug resistant infections. Other signs of nursing abuse include:

  • Unexplained injuries
  • Restraint marks
  • Lack of hygiene maintenance
  • Untidy living conditions
  • Unexplained withdrawals from bank accounts
  • Bedsores and poor skin conditions
  • Signs of dehydration
  • Unusually sedated residents
  • Weight loss
  • Broken bones & fractures
  • Bruising from unknown injuries
  • A patient that withdraws socially over time
  • Entirely non-communicative patient
  • A fear of physical contact

Bedsores are categorized into four stages, based on their depth, severity and other characteristics. They include:

  • Stage I—a persistent redness, swelling and tenderness on a patient’s skin.
  • Stage II—a loss of some of skin thickness. Appears as a blister, abrasion or shallow crater.
  • Stage III—damage to the full thickness of the skin. A deep lesion or crater is present.
  • Stage IV—a complete loss of the skin. Muscle or bone is exposed.

A bedsore can advance quickly when patients do not receive proper treatment and care in a nursing home or assisted living center. There are various factors associated with developing bedsores, though most involve neglect, understaffing, overmedicating, a lack of nutritional care and patient immobility.

Common Sites of Pressure Sores

  • Tailbone & Buttocks
  • Shoulder blades
  • Spine
  • Backs of arms & legs
  • Back or sides of the head
  • Hips
  • Lower back
  • Heels & ankles
  • Behind the knees

Complications of Bedsores & Skin Infections

  • Cellulitis—an infection of the skin and connected soft tissues.
  • Bone and joint infections—Infections from pressure sores can pass into joints and bones, damaging cartilage and tissue. Bone infections may reduce the function of joints and limbs.
  • Amputation
  • Sepsis
  • Cancer—long-term, unhealed wounds can develop into a type of squamous cell carcinoma
Do these cases settle?

Nursing homes tend to settle out of court when accidents and wrongful deaths occur, and you may seek legal counsel to guide you through the legal process. 

Why Hire the Lyon Firm?

Our Firm will help you find the answers.  The Firm has the experience, resources and dedication to take on difficult and emotional cases and help our clients obtain the justice for the wrong they have suffered. 

 Experience:  Joe Lyon is an experienced Cincinnati Nursing Home Neglect Lawyer. The Lyon Firm has 17 years of experience and success representing individuals and plaintiffs in all fifty states, and in a variety of complex civil litigation matters.   Nursing Home lawsuits can be complex and require industry experts to determine the root cause of an accident or injury. Mr. Lyon has worked with experts nationwide to assist individuals understand why an injury occurred and what can be done to improve their lives in the future. Some cases may go to a jury trial, though many others can be settled out of court.

Resources/Dedication: Mr. Lyon has worked with experts in the fields of accident reconstruction, biomechanics, epidemiology, metallurgy, pharmacology, toxicology, human factors, workplace safety, life care planning, economics, and virtually every medical discipline in successfully representing Plaintiffs across numerous areas of law. The Lyon Firm is dedicated to building the strongest cases possible for clients and their critical interests.

Results:  Mr. Lyon has obtained numerous seven and six figure results in personal injury,  automotive product liability, medical Negligence, construction accidents, and auto dealership negligence cases.  The cases have involved successfully litigating against some of  the largest companies in the world 

Your Right to Safety

Your Loved Ones Should Not Have to Suffer in Their Homes

The elderly population in nursing homes and assisted living facilities around Ohio frequently suffer injuries like bedsores due to understaffing and neglect. Some underlying issues that lead to dangerous skin ulcers include improper medication, a lack of supervision, malnutrition, inadequate wound care, and a delay in sending patients to medical centers and hospitals. These severe injuries are almost always preventable, and nursing homes have a duty to ensure that residents are kept safe and as healthy as possible. Nursing home neglect may lead to severe infection, amputations, and death.

Good quality care in nursing homes includes evaluating medical quality, nurse staff levels, sanitary conditions, and health inspection reports.Overall staffing appears to be a huge factor in the level of care provided. Residents need continual attention and reports aim to monitor the average hours a day a patient receives care from registered nurses, licensed practical nurses, licensed vocational nurses and certified nurse assistants.

Popular Ohio Nursing Home Management
that have Faced Penalty

In recent years, several Ohio nursing homes have faced personal injury claims for failing to protect residents. 

Diversicare of St. Theresa

Cincinnati, Ohio

Diversicare of Siena Woods

Dayton, Ohio

Diversicare of Bradford Place

Hamilton, Ohio

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