Although slip and fall accidents are not limited to a single age group, they tend to occur most commonly in older individuals, particularly the elderly population in nursing homes throughout the country. Due to old age, pre-existing health conditions, and a multitude of other reasons, slip and fall accidents in the elderly population are far more dangerous than the others.
The elderly are prone to grave physical injury as a result of such accidents. A minor slip and fall that leaves a healthy young individual with only a few bruises might cause long and short bone fractures in the elderly. Therefore, slip and falls in nursing homes are different from all other accidents and should be taken very seriously.
Slip and Fall Accidents in Nursing Homes
Slip and falls in nursing homes might occur due to a variety of reasons. While the environmental factors at the facility are an important part of most accidents, some accidents occur due to the physical and cognitive decline in the elderly that predisposes them to such injuries. A combination of these two factors can have deadly consequences for the elderly if they are not looked after properly.
One of the major reasons why children chose nursing homes for their aging parents is the concern for their wellbeing and round-the-clock safety. Unlike adult homes, nursing homes are responsible for the safety of their residents. Therefore, it is natural to wonder whether a nursing home can be held liable for a slip and fall accident that leads to significant physical injury in the elderly.
Causes of Slip and Fall Accidents in Nursing Homes
Nursing home slip and fall accidents can occur due to a variety of reasons, including:
- Slippery floors of hallways or rooms
- Lack of handrails alongside walkways or staircases
- Improper cleanliness
- Absence of assistive walking tools like canes and walkers
- Inadequate lighting conditions at the facility, etc.
Aside from the above-mentioned causes, slip and fall accidents also occur if the staff at the facility fails to provide adequate support or supervision to the residents who cannot walk on their own. Any inadequacies or deficiencies in the nursing home caring plan for its residents can also cause such accidents.
If the slip and fall accident occurred due to the negligence of the nursing home staff, the nursing home is held liable for the accident. Whenever a new resident joins the nursing facility, the nursing home staff is required to determine whether or not he/she is at an increased risk of falling when walking unsupervised. The nursing home is liable for the accident if the staff fails to take precautions and implement protocols to ensure such accidents do not occur.
Hiring a Lawyer
If your loved one got injured in a slip and fall accident at a nursing home, you should immediately hire a competent lawyer to represent your case. An experienced lawyer dealing in personal injury cases like slip and fall accidents can help you obtain fair financial compensation for the medical and surgical bills, pain and suffering, punitive damages, etc.