Danville Care Center was cited by the Illinois Department of Public Health for an unsafe transfer that left a resident with a fractured tibia.
The resident’s care plan called for her to be transferred from bed with a mechanical lift using two aides. In this case, a lift was used and two aides were in fact present when the lift was put into use (something that is not always the case). However, the supporting sling that the resident was placed in during the lifting portion of the transfer was set up properly, resulting in her sliding out of the sling and landing on the ground.
Making matters worse, the aides present in the room transferred her back to bed before alerting a nurse to the fact that a fall had happened during the transfer. When an aide becomes aware that a resident has fallen, a nurse must do an assessment before moving the resident who has fallen to determine whether there might be injuries which would make moving the resident unsafe. The aides moving the resident had the potential to make a bad situation much worse.
She was taken to the emergency room where a fractured tibia was discovered. Due to some of her other medical conditions and her lack of mobility, surgery was not an option. Instead, she will be placed in a boot to allow the fractures to heal. Had there been a fractured hip, deciding to not proceed to surgery would in essence sentence the fall victim to a lifetime of pain with any movement in bed because hip fractures generally do not heal without surgery.
This is not the first time Danville Care Center has been cited by IDPH for unsafe transfers. Hopefully, this latest citation will spur improved performance by its staff.
Other blog posts on nursing home falls: