An Oklahoma nursing home is being accused of neglect and other deficiencies after a 94-year-old woman was hospitalized with severe injuries.
The family of the elderly resident say they suspect a fall caused the injuries. They say the culprit is nursing home neglect; their family member had fallen before at the residence, but nursing home staff did nothing to prevent future falls.
Further, the nursing home, Ranchwood Nursing Center, has a record of deficiencies reported by inspectors that is over twice the national average.
Ranchwood has been cited by investigators for problems stemming from neglect, like failure to clean up after residents in a timely manner and failure to provide adequate staff.
According to an investigation by a local news station, News 9, the elderly woman was in good health months before; however, she was hospitalized with her face covered in bruises.
The family told reporters that they believed Ranchwood would be safe for their relative, but she suffered from falls previously.
The family asked the facility to provide safety measures to prevent falls, but they say nursing home neglect led to another fall.
“We’re not sure whether she fell out of bed or if she was trying to get out of her bed into her wheelchair and the wheels weren’t locked in the wheelchair and it rolled out from under her but she did quite a bit of damage to her head and her face,” the woman’s grandson told News 9.
The family told News 9 that they had reported other instances of neglect to Ranchwood, but the facility refused to take any action.
“It’s pretty heartbreaking to see her,” continued the woman’s grandson. “We go up and we check on her as much as we can and try to be there for her but just trying to get people to do their jobs and take care of her is the frustrating part. Finding her soiled. There are days that I think she has gone most of the day without being changed and getting her up out of her wheelchair and it just being soaked…”
Advocates say that nursing home neglect is unfortunately far too common. They recommend families keep records of all issues and report them to law enforcement if necessary. Additionally, under Oklahoma law, families can install cameras in their family member’s rooms and advocates recommend they do so.
Nursing Home Neglect
As the baby boomer population enters their golden years, more seniors will reside in nursing homes. Families may think that nursing homes are a safe place for their elderly relative, but unfortunately lack of staff and other resources can lead to instances of neglect.
Nursing home neglect includes failing to meet the needs of residents regarding their health and safety, such as preventing falls in the Ranchwood facility. Residents should also be cleaned, hydrated and nourished properly. Another example of neglect is failure to adequately clean and maintain the nursing home.
If you are concerned about nursing home neglect, contact the attorneys at McDonald Worley for help.