All nursing homes should be outfitted with knowledgeable and resourceful employees and staff members. When a facility follows federal law, there are strict staffing procedures in place to ensure that only qualified people, including registered nurses, certified nursing assistants, licensed practical nurses, and physical therapists, provide direct care to the elderly residents.
Nursing homes that ignore federal and state laws and hire employees that are not qualified are putting residents at risk of injury or worse. Let’s take a look at the dangers of negligent hiring and supervision in nursing homes.
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Negligent Hiring in Nursing Homes
Negligent hiring refers to situations where a nursing home resident is injured by an employee the company has wrongfully hired. Claims revolving around negligent hiring are often made when there is something in the employee’s past that could have predicted that they would engage in questionable or negligent behavior.
Nursing homes are required to carefully hire employees and take steps to verify identity d qualifications. Some of those steps include performing criminal background checks, checking employment and personal reference, validating degrees and certifications, performing drug screening, performing credit checks, and taking a look into driving records.
To prove a long-term care facility committed negligent hiring, the plaintiff needs to be able to demonstrate the facility was required to carefully look into potential staff members and failed, an appropriate investigation would have revealed the person was not suitable to work with the elderly, and it was unreasonable for the employer to hire the employee in question.
Examples of Negligent Hiring
There are a number of situations that could bring cause for negligent hiring claims against a nursing home. Some of the most common include:
- A nursing home failing to recognize that an applicant used a fraudulent degree from a non-accredited college who then performs CPR on a resident that dies,
- A nursing home employee with an expired certification or license who gives an inaccurate medication dosage to a resident who suffers severe side effects,
- A new staff member with a documented history of anger issues who attacks a resident and causes injury.
Negligent Supervision in Nursing Homes
Negligent supervision refers to a similar situation where a resident is injured, but the employee’s background and past would not have necessarily alluded to potential problems. A facility can be held accountable for negligent supervision when, during the course of employment, the nursing home becomes aware or should have become aware of problems with an employee that indicated their inability to do their job correctly, but the facility failed to look into the matter.
Proving negligent supervision can be challenging, but the right attorney will know what steps to take and what evidence to gather. To file a successful nursing home abuse claim based on negligent supervision, you need to establish the existence of a duty on the part of the caregiver, the failure of the caregiver to prevent injury, the injury that resulted from the inaction, how the harm should have been foreseeable, and the damages suffered.
Examples of Negligent Supervision
As with negligent hiring, there are a number of ways in which negligent supervision can unfold. If your loved one experienced one of the following situations, you might be able to take legal action:
- An administrator at the nursing home is aware that a certain nurse and resident do not get along, but the nurse is still assigned to that resident, resulting in an argument that turns physical,
- A nurse fails to take action after noticing a resident has been showing forceful sexual interest in another resident who dismisses the advances, and the resident is sexually abused, or
- An administrator knows personal items are going missing from residents’ rooms and has an idea of who the culprit is, but fails to investigate, discharge, or reassign the employee, resulting in a resident’s identity being stolen.
If your loved one was in a different situation that you feel could be considered negligent hiring or supervision, it’s essential to speak with a lawyer to determine if the situation warrants an injury claim.
Protect Your Loved One With Thomas Law Offices
If you believe your loved one has suffered abuse or neglect at their long-term care facility, you have the right to take legal action on their behalf. Doing so could not only hold the facility accountable, but you’ll also be able to seek the compensation your family member needs to recover and find a new, safer facility. To learn more about filing a claim after nursing home abuse, contact Thomas Law Offices to schedule a free case evaluation with a Chicago nursing home abuse attorney.