Welcome to Nursing Home Falls,
an educational web site about falls in nursing homes and what family members should do when their loved one falls in a nursing home.

Placing an elderly family member in a nursing home is a very difficult decision. Many doctors, nurses, and even home health agencies recommend family members place their loved ones in a nursing home when they exhibit mobility problems and dementia. Nursing homes are supposed to provide round-the-clock care to residents, but they are often understaffed, so care of residents is limited. The sad thing is many family members believe that the nursing home will provide a high level of care to their loved ones and that they will be safe from falls. But the reality is serious falls and residents who end up dying from fall-related injuries are very common in many nursing homes in America. This is very alarming that numerous elderly people's lives have been shortened by serious falls they in sustained nursing homes in America.

According to this July 6, 2017 article, Typical nursing home reports 100-200 patient falls per year, the leading cause of preventable emergency-room hospital room visits among older populations is falls, which account for about 36% of these visits. Many of these falls occur in nursing homes and assisted living facilities, despite the fact that many residents live in these facilities in the first place because they require extra mobility assistance. In addition, about 10% to 20% of nursing home falls cause serious injuries, according to the CDC that result in disability or even deaths.

The average 100-bed nursing home in United States reports between 100-200 resident falls each year. While these numbers are very disturbing, so, too, is the fact that they refer only to the number of falls that employees actually report. Many nursing home falls go unreported because a staff member may fear facing sanctions or because he or she does not believe a fall was substantial enough to warrant filing a report.

Falls kill about 1,800 U.S. nursing home residents annually

According to the CDC, about 1,800 nursing home residents die every year because of injuries they sustained during falls in nursing homes, but this number refers only to the number of actual reported falls, meaning the real figure is likely much higher.

Many nursing home residents who have fallen and sustained serious injuries such as fractured femurs, fractured hips, and fractured cervical spine may live for weeks or months afterwards, but the fractures make their health decline, and they end up succumbing to complications from the fractures due to their limited mobility and the stress the fractures have on their organs such as lungs, heart, etc. It is harder for a frail elderly person to recover from fractured bones than a younger person. In most of those cases, the nursing home will try to cover up that the fracture and fall contributed to the resident’s death by saying they died from something else such as pneumonia.

Sadly, many nursing homes are never held accountable for nursing home falls especially the most serious falls that result in traumatic brain injury and fractures because family members do not report their loved one's fall to the agency in their state that oversees nursing homes and/or take legal action. This is a tragedy because nursing homes will continue their behavior and will not take the prevention of future, similar falls seriously.

Nursing home falls kill too many nursing home residents each year, and negligence plays a role in many of these falls.


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