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Understaffing Causes Nursing Home Negligence

Dec 1, 2007
People are paying a bundle to keep a loved one in a nursing home these days. The average cost of an annual stay at a facility is $71,000 for a private room in the United States. What is appalling is that this estimate doesn't reflect the care and attention that patients deserve when submitted to these facilities. One of the reasons for this rise in substandard care is under-staffing. And Facilities that are understaffed usually have patients that suffer from abuse and negligence.

The majority of homes in the US are for-profit enterprises, usually operating with too few staff assigned to too many patients. The Department of Health and Human Services estimate that over 90 percent of nursing homes operating in the United States do not have enough staff to provide proper care. Staff also tends to be overworked and underpaid, which leads to a high turnover rate at most facilities. Replacement rates at some nursing homes approach 100 percent annually. With new staff coming and going, it is easy to see how a patient's particular needs might not receive the special care that they deserve.

Over several decades, Washington has tried to pass legislation to force the nursing home industry to provide better care. Unfortunately for victims of abuse and negligence, legislators are not trying hard enough. Ultimately it is up to the families and friends of the patient to bring about real change. One step you can take to prevent abuse is visiting your loved one often. If a patient doesn't receive a lot of visitors, staff forgets that the patients are real people. Another step you can take if you suspect abuse is to talk to a nursing home negligence attorney.

If you suspect that a loved one is suffering from abuse and negligence, you should talk to a nursing home negligence attorney immediately. An attorney will examine the circumstances involving your claim, and proceed to take legal action against the guilty nursing home. Nursing home negligence attorneys will also represent your loved one in court, make sure the elderly patient is removed to a better facility, and ensure that the patient of abuse gets compensation that can help them get the treatment and help they may need.

An experienced nursing home negligence attorney will also set up a free, no obligation consultation to explain what they can do immediately to help. Many serious health problems and fatalities have resulted from instances of nursing home abuse. Contacting a nursing home abuse lawyer will prevent future incidents of abuse to the said patient. It is imperative that you contact a nursing home abuse lawyer, because the law limits the amount of time after a patient incurs an injury to file suit.
About the Author
Nick Johnson is lead counsel with Johnson Law Group. Johnson represents plaintiffs in many states and focuses on injury cases involving Fen-Phen and PPH, Paxil, Mesothelioma and Nursing Home Abuse. Call Nick Johnson at 1-888-311-5522 or visit http://www.johnsonlawgroup.com
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