Columbia Falls Lawyer
Falls are one of the leading causes of injury in hospitals and nursing homes, and many are entirely preventable. Hospitals and nursing homes are responsible for creating a safe environment for all of their patients, and this includes diligently attending to patients who are a fall risk. If you or a loved one were injured during a fall at a hospital, nursing home, or other medical facility, you should not be forced to pay for the additional medical care, lost wages, and other financial strains that your injuries have caused. The Columbia fall lawyers at Simmons Law Firm can file a lawsuit against the negligent party to secure the funds you need to recover.
The Troubling Reality of Falls Among Older Adults
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in five falls among adults over the age of 65 results in a serious injury. Head trauma and bone fractures are among the most common serious injuries suffered by fall victims. Tragically, older adults are at a high risk of serious injury and even death from simply falling to the ground.
Falls Also Affect Young Adults
Up to 1 million patients fall in hospitals each year, according to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. And, not all of them are older adults. Patients recovering from surgery, patients nursing an injury to their leg or back, and patients who have been sedated for pain management are all at a high risk of falling while getting out of bed, using the bathroom, or simply walking down the hallway corridor for exercise. Young and old adults who are fall risks need to be monitored by hospital staff to prevent these falls that cause further injury.
Responsibilities of the Hospital to Prevent Falls
Hospitals have countless responsibilities for their patients. A few, regarding fall prevention, include:
- Conducting proper screening of patients who may be at fall risks—If a patient is suspected of being at risk of falling due to their age or condition, their healthcare team should conduct gait and strength analysis, review their medication, assess dizzy spells, and take other diagnostic measures to find out what their fall risks are.
- Assisting patients getting in and out of bed.
- Assisting patients while using the bathroom.
- Ensuring bed guard rails are up and locked in place while the patient is resting in bed.
- Keeping the floor of the patient’s room clear of debris, including medical packaging waste, excess furniture, and spilled food and liquids.
Falls Caused by an Unsafe Premises
Some falls are not the fault of doctors, nurses, or other medical staff at hospitals and nursing homes, but are caused by negligent maintenance or negligent safety measures. Examples of when a hospital can be held responsible for premises liability include:
- Lack of handrails or guardrails;
- Unmarked steps up or down;
- Uneven stairs or steps;
- Torn carpeting;
- Cracked flooring;
- Slippery flooring;
- Cluttered walkways; and
- Poor lighting.
Contact a Columbia Fall Attorney
Knowing that your fall could, and should, have been avoided is devastating for patients who were already sick or injured before the fall. An attorney can help you seek financial aid and justice for the injuries you are now forced to deal with. Call Simmons Law Firm today at 803-779-4600 to schedule a free meeting with a Columbia fall attorney today.