Our readers might think that nursing homes would be one of the safest places for an individual to receive long-term care, considering the fact that they are tasked with caring for what could be the most vulnerable population amongst us. Yet, time and again we hear reports about nursing home neglect that puts innocent residents’ lives at risk. Far too often these individuals are seriously injured as a result. In the worst cases, they die.
Now, nursing homes and other long-term care facilities are receiving some blame for the spread of drug-resistant fungal infections that can prove fatal in elderly individuals. The fungus in question, C. auris, is currently known to infect nearly 400 individuals with almost 500 others carrying it without exhibiting symptoms. One of the biggest reasons blame is somewhat being shifted away from overuse of antibiotics is the fact that many nursing homes are understaffed, which causes them to be ineffective in infection control efforts.
The shortcomings of some nursing homes and other long-term care facilities are astounding. In fact, a recent study by the State Health Department found that some of these institutions that are dealing with C. auris are failing to consistently use disposable gowns and latex gloves. In some instances, the long-term care facility has failed to even post warning signs of the infection to warn others of the potential for spreading it.
The mere presence of a serious, drug-resistant infection doesn’t necessarily mean that nursing home neglect has occurred. However, if one of these debilitating or fatal conditions can be linked to a nursing home’s failure to abide by state-mandated protocols, then negligence has likely occurred.