No one enjoys staying in the hospital. And no one especially wants to stay any longer than necessary. A hospital stay can be prolonged, however, if you suffer an injury due to a fall during your time there. If you think that this is only a concern for the elderly and the seriously ill, you would be wrong.
Reports indicate hundreds of thousands of patients fall in hospitals every year, with some suffering serious injuries as a result. This leads to an extension of time spent in the hospital on an average of about a week. Patients who are frail or have a compromised immune system may take even longer to recover. Injuries range from cuts and bruises to broken bones and internal bleeding. All patients can be susceptible to a fall depending on the circumstances surrounding their health. While the elderly and seriously ill may be at more of risk for a fall, factors such as side effects from medication, being unsteady on your feet, and the progress of recovery can all contribute to a patient suffering a fall in a hospital.
Studies show the hospital units with the greatest number of falls are neurosurgery, neurology, and medicine. Patients in nursing homes and long-term care facilities are also at risk. There are steps all of these medical facilities can take to ensure the safety of their patients including:
- Raising awareness about the prevention of falls
- Using a standardized guide on how to effectively assess a fall risk
- Compiling an individual prevention plan for patients who are a fall risk
- Continuing to reevaluate the patient’s condition and treatment
- Examining contributing factors when a fall occurs
A large number of falls in hospitals and nursing homes can and should be prevented. Being subjected to additional treatment for injuries suffered as the result of a fall can be costly to your health and your bank account. If you or someone you love has suffered an injury as the result of a fall in a hospital or nursing home that should have been prevented, please call the skilled and compassionate experienced attorneys at Finz & Finz, P.C., today.