When you hear about neglect in elder care facilities, it’s easy to assume that the staff just must not care about the residents. Rather than helping them with food, hydration, showering, mobility and things of this nature, the staff intentionally neglects them and allows injuries to occur.
This may happen in some facilities, to be sure, and you can often find examples of staff members who take this view. However, a larger issue is that a lot of these facilities are understaffed. This leaves the workers who are on the clock with no way to meet the needs of all the residents in their care.
Even simple tasks become impossible
The problems with understaffing are many. For example, one man who had a stroke and needed help dressing said that he could rarely find workers who were not already completely behind in work they needed to get done. He said that staffing on the weekends was so sparse that the facility felt like a ghost town.
A worker may mean well and do everything in their power to help as many residents as they can, but this type of understaffing makes it impossible. That could mean that residents are left to fend for themselves and attempt grooming and hygiene tasks they are ill-equipped to manage alone.
Also, there is a danger that there is dangerous lag-time in responding to alarms and that residents’ needs are forgotten. It’s a very worrisome situation — and the blame falls on those running the facility more than on the workers whom they employ.
Relatives may need to take legal action
Has your loved one been injured and/or neglected in a care facility? If so, you must know about all the legal options you have at your disposal.