A nursing home in Hartford, Connecticut is one of many being fined for mistreatment of patients or violation of rules. The fine was levied after the facility moved a patient without notifying her spouse. The patient’s husband had protested the move because the new facility was too far away for him to be able to visit regularly.
The reason for the move is appalling. The facility did little to prevent the patient from eloping from the facility, despite a documented history of running away. Rather than address its shortcomings, the nursing home decided to force the patient to move rather than take responsibility.
Elopements are one of the biggest risks facing skilled nursing facilities, yet too many such facilities have poor protocols in place to address them. Elopements occur for a variety of reasons, including:
- Patient disagreeing whether a nursing home is required for care
- Dementia and confusion leading the patient to seek to return home or to other familiar areas
- Mistreatment and abuse at the hands of staff creating an unlivable environment for the patient
People who have been placed in elderly care facilities lack the ability to take care of themselves, so the risks to their health and safety from being unaccompanied in the community are clear. And yet these issues continue to repeat themselves again and again, as nursing homes do not keep people who are flight risks from running away.
If your loved one has suffered due to eloping from a medical facility, or if a person who cares for his been mistreated in any fashion by nursing home personnel, consider retaining an attorney. Determining whether or not the facility was negligent is important, and an experienced lawyer knows the right questions to ask to determine just what went wrong.