Dangers of Understaffed Nursing Homes
When loved ones live in long-term care facilities, their friends and family members are relying on facility staff members to give them the attention and care they need. However, residents are not always treated with dignity; there are times when abuse happens. One of the dangers that leads to abuse in nursing homes is that not all facilities are fully staffed with qualified employees.
There are Florida laws in place to protect individuals who live in nursing homes. Often, there are staffing levels laid out within contracts signed by family members. Assisted living facilities and nursing homes are required to keep buildings staffed with the number of employees they have stated will be present within their contracts. If you believe someone you love has been a victim of abuse in an assisted living facility, talk to a Sarasota nursing home abuse attorney.
Reasons Low Staffing Levels Are Risky
Dangers are present in facilities that do not have enough trained employees caring for residents. Abuse may be more likely when staff is overworked, stressed, and angry. Sometimes staff is forced by management to work double shifts due to staff levels. When this happens, the staff is tired and frustrated. Overtaxed workers may have short tempers and vulnerable older adults often require patience and understanding.
Some issues that can arise from understaffing:
- Unclean rooms and common areas.
- Environments that are unsafe and full of debris.
- Dangers of dehydration, bad nutrition, and malnutrition.
- Risk of infections and bedsores.
- Falls because no staff was available to help an individual with mobility issues.
- Personal hygiene is not attended to, so residents are not bathed or groomed properly.
- Medical and prescription errors.
- Health concerns not monitored.
Situations Where Not Enough Staff Is Available
There is extensive management involved in running long-term care facilities smoothly. In order to keep everyone healthy and comfortable, there are often many expenses. Employee pay is a high cost to facilities. If there are issues with a budget, staffing levels may be reduced. Also, more expensive positions, such as positions that are certified and licensed, could be eliminated.
Of course, when staffing levels are reduced there can be added stress for remaining employees. Some leave due to the pressure, which can exacerbate problems, making retention of staffing more complicated.
Older adults have rights. Sometimes they are unable to advocate for their rights because of ongoing physical health issues or deteriorating cognitive skills. A Sarasota nursing home abuse attorney can help if you are worried about the treatment of individuals in a long-term care facility.
Contact a Sarasota Nursing Home Abuse Attorney Today
Are you concerned about the staffing levels within a Florida nursing home? Talk to a lawyer to understand options for you and your family. The experienced Sarasota attorneys at Hale Law can help you and your family fight for your rights. We work on a contingency fee basis, which means there are no fees or costs if we are unable to recover compensation. For a free consultation, call us anytime at 941-735-4529.