Indiana Nursing Home Program Cuts Bedsores by 30%

Posted by PKSD Law Firm on Sep 11, 2009 in Nursing Homes and Elder Rights

Indiana health officials say a program reduced bed sores at more than 160 nursing homes, hospitals and home health agencies across Indiana over the past year.

The program, led by the University of Indianapoliss Center for Aging and Community, focused on such steps as daily skin checks, keeping patients well hydrated and nourished, and reducing the amount of pressure by their bodies on their beds.

Only 23% of the participating home health agencies did a risk assessment within 24 hours of admission. That number grew to 87% after the program was instituted.

Under Federal law, nursing homes must protect and promote residents rights to quality care. This includes care to maintain and improve the residents ability to carry out activities of daily living; access to social services; prevention and management of bed sores; and proper nutrition and fluids.

Its unacceptable that these facilities need to institute a special program to provide the necessary level of care already required by Federal law.

The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, along with the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Health Care Organizations, have released improved regulations to increase the level of care that must be performed by skilled nursing facilities with regards to pressure sores.

These new regulations cite ways in which the facilities must prevent and treat pressure sores with respect to whether or not the nursing facility has made an appropriate preventive effort. If a nursing home fails to abide by these new regulations, they will be held accountable.

As we age, our skin becomes thin and dry and less elastic. This is one reason that the elderly are at-risk for pressure sores. Health experts say most pressure sores are avoidable. In fact, caregivers say bedsores are easier to prevent than to treat.

Pitman, Kalkhoff, Sicula & Dentice, S.C. is a Wisconsin law firm with a devoted nursing home abuse practice. Our nursing home abuse and neglect trial team is the largest in the state and has successfully represented abused and neglected nursing home residents throughout Wisconsin.

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