DATELINE NEW HYDE PARK, NY "Dad, remember when the two of you wanted to go for a walk to Umberto's for a pizza?" Abby asked. "You always went early in the afternoon, remember?"
Abby's father, Ben, was a fit 80-something in full possession of his faculties.
"Definitely. If she was having trouble with her walker, I'd try to help her across the rough spots on the sidewalk. She loved going to Umberto's," Ben said.
"I think this fall, the one the hospital says proved fatal, could have been avoided. I'll bet you anything that she had to go to the bathroom and nobody came to assist her when she range the call bell." Abby's sadness was tinged with anger.
"I know, honey. But what can we do now?" Ben said, trying to sooth her in this, one of the worst in their lives together.
"I'm going to do something about this. And get to the bottom of it. Even if the nursing home is telling us they don't even know who was on duty in that wing when it happened." Abby hardened. "I can't let Mom's death be in vain."
analysisWhat happened to Abby’s Mom in a nursing home is not uncommon.
Nursing home abuse often manifests itself in unexplained injuries that can ultimately be traced to falls or other negligent nursing home care.The causes of these falls require investigation, a study of medical records, and plenty of question-asking. A nursing home should be a safe place for patients, but sadly patients suffer falls and injuries due to negligent nursing home care. How will you know whether your loved one’s injury was caused by negligent nursing home care? Often the first indication comes from an unexplained fracture, hematoma or other injury. An unexpected visit to the emergency room is also cause to suspect negligent nursing home care. Ask questions. What caused the injury? Was there a fall? Where and when did this happen? In the case of Abby’s Mom, she may have needed to go to the bathroom and nobody answered her call for help. Or, she may have been so medicated she could not walk properly.
Or she may have fallen out of bed or a wheelchair because the nursing home was not monitoring her properly due to inadequate and short staffing.