IDPH has cited and fined Bella Terra Streamwood nursing home after a resident there sustained a fractured tibia and femur after falling from bed.
One piece of information that our firm looks at very closely in investigating nursing home abuse and neglect cases is the Minimum Data Set (MDS). The MDS is a summary of the results of a series of assessments done as to the care needs of the resident. It is supposed to reflect the levels of care that the resident requires. It forms part of the basis by which the nursing home is paid for providing care to the resident and must be signed under oath by the staff members completing it.
The results of the MDS trigger a process called the Care Area Assessment which is essentially a prompt for the nursing home staff to initiate the care planning process for various areas. Because the MDS triggers the Care Area Assessment, there should be a high degree of congruency between the MDS and what is reflected on the resident care plan.
Here, the resident’s MDS indicated that she required a two-person assist to turn and reposition in bed. Her care plan also called for assist of two with bed mobility.
On the day of this nursing home fall, the resident was receiving incontinence care from a single aide. She was in a position lying on her side and asked the aide to apply some additional lotion before turning her back from her side. As the aide reached for the lotion, the resident rolled off the side of the bed and landed on the floor. The resident was sent to the hospital where she was diagnosed with fractures of the tibia (shin bone) and the femur (thigh bone).
Here, the resident was properly assessed as requiring a two-person assist with bed mobility. This was because she had strength and mobility deficits which made it hard for her to maintain position in bed. There was a care plan in place which called for the proper level of care – two staff with bed mobility – but that care plan was not followed because you had one person doing a two-job with predictably disastrous results.
When you have staff taking shortcuts in the care of residents, it raises questions about three larger questions than the immediate shortcomings in care. One is the possibility that the this is an understaffed nursing home – did the aide feel that she did not have time to wait for extra help to keep the resident safe? Second, is this a poorly trained staff given that the aide did not know to follow the care plan? Third, is there a breakdown in the delivery of care where the staff on the floor is not properly instructed as to the contents of the care plan? All of these possibilities deserve a closer look.
One of our core beliefs is that nursing homes are built to fail due to the business model they follow and that unnecessary accidental injuries and wrongful deaths of nursing home residents are the inevitable result. Order our FREE report, Built to Fail, to learn more about why. Our experienced Chicago nursing home lawyers are ready to help you understand what happened, why, and what your rights are. Contact us to get the help you need.
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