Not all Tennessee nursing homes have problems. Many families are able to find a suitable place that cares for their loved one. However, some Tennesseans are not so fortunate. A report by the Knoxville News Sentinel described negligence of care discovered in a number of nursing homes in the state, including one in Knoxville. These deficiencies in care have resulted in injury and contributed to the deaths of some nursing home residents.
As explained by the Knoxville News Sentinel, a common problem with these deficient nursing homes is a lack of staffing. Because of an inadequate number of care workers, residents suffered from a lack of proper care. It was common in these understaffed homes to find residents suffering from bedsores. There were also residents who had lost an excessive amount of weight, with some suffering from a lack of hygiene that contributed to infections.
Negligence in care was also found to cause serious injury. One nursing home resident suffered knee fractures after sliding out of bed during a changing of bed sheets. Her fall was not reported until she screamed in pain. A nursing home in Maryville had residents suffering multiple falls, with one resident falling nine times and experiencing one fracture. In a nursing home in Johnson City, residents were restrained, which put them at risk of hurting themselves because they tried to get free.
Medication errors were also common among the negligent homes, with some homes suffering medication errors above the federal standard. In a Humboldt home, a nurse provided a diabetic resident with an excessive amount of insulin that put the resident into a coma. A Madison nursing home failed to provide residents with needed insulin and also provided incorrect blood pressure and cardiac medication.
These examples provide an idea of the forms of negligent care that take place in some Tennessee nursing homes. Mismanaged care can significantly degrade the health of a senior citizen or even result in death. It is crucial to seek assistance if abuse or neglect is occurring to preserve the life of the resident being abused and if necessary, prepare for possible civil litigation.