If you were asked when the appropriate time to train certified nurse aides (CNA) on the use of a mechanical lift would be, you would undoubtedly answer that instruction should begin before they needed to use the mechanical lift.
Unfortunately for the residents of Rosewood Care Center in Swansea, Illinois, the CNAs were not trained until after a botched transfer resulted in a broken leg after a nursing home fall. All nursing homes are required to conduct an initial physical and mental evaluation of each resident when they are first admitted to the home called a minimum data set (MDS).
In this case, the MDS found that the man was a serious risk for nursing home falls. In fact, there was a history of nursing home falls and injuries, specifically a broken leg. The plan of care called for extensive assistance in transfers from bed to wheelchair and vice versa utilizing a mechanical lift.
One example of a mechanical lift is called a Hoyer Lift. Using a combination of slings of varying strength, the nursing home resident is completely and gently transferred from one place of rest to another. The Hoyer Lift, and other similar mechanical lifts, sound easy to use, but are actually quite complicated. The appropriate slings must be precisely used and placed to ensure that the resident does not slip or fall during the transfer.
In this case, the untrained CNAs at the Rosewood Care Center simply decided to forgo the mechanical lift entirely, and lift and transfer the resident themselves.
Predictably, some would say inevitably, that strategy was doomed to failure. Nursing home neglect occurs when the standard of care, or a course of action ordered by the nursing home or a physician is not followed.
If you have a loved one who has been injured in a nursing home fall at an Illinois nursing home, contact our Chicago nursing home lawyers for a free and confidential evaluation of your case.