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Suing a Nursing Home in Columbia for Restraint-Related Injuries

January 2, 2022

You can sue a nursing home in Columbia for abusive treatment with your loved ones. Nursing homes are established to provide care and support to old and sick people. Elderly and needful individuals should always be treated carefully as well as with dignity and respect. There should be no abuse in the nursing home. According to WHO, more than 64% of nursing staff members abused residents.

Abuse may also include the use of restraints. Restraints are used to keep the residents safe from harming themselves yet staff uses restraints to make their jobs easier. Without consent, if the staff is overusing restraints then it is abusive. You should be aware of the types of restraints and the types of injuries they may cause. You are eligible to seek legal action if you suspect that your loved one has been abused in a facility.

Types of Restraints Used On Residents & Nursing Home Negligence Lawyers:

Restraints are used to restrict the movement of residents. There are two types of restraints used in a nursing home in Columbia; physical restraint and chemical restraint. Unfortunately, the nursing staff uses these restraints when they are understaffed, overworked, or unwilling to do their jobs effectively. This is the reason why restraints are considered a form of abuse in nursing homes. Our expert attorney can help you in building a strong claim.

Physical Restraints:

To keep the residents in bed, various types of devices and methods are used. These devices are attached to the resident’s body. It is very difficult to remove these restraints. They make the residents feel agitated, stressed, and helpless. Common physical restraints include:

  • Vests
  • Bedrails
  • Wheelchair belts
  • Arm restraints
  • Safety bars
  • Ropes
  • Leg restraints
  • Tight sheets
  • Hand mitts
  • Belts or cords

The nursing staff can use other techniques for restraints such as keeping the wheelchair or bed close to the wall so that the resident is unable to move. Disabled and old residents are at higher risk of abusive behavior in nursing homes.

Chemical Restraints:

When the nursing staff does not want to deal with residents they also use chemical restraints. These restraints are sedative drugs given to residents including:

  • Anti-seizure drugs
  • Anti-psychotic drugs

These facilities are not authorized to give residents such drugs unless prescribed by the doctor.

Condition When Restraints Are Not Allowed:

Unnecessary use of restraints is prohibited by state and federal laws. Using restraints by the nursing staff is unacceptable in the following circumstances:

  • To permanently control a resident
  • Punish a resident
  • Substitute medical treatment or activity
  • Making care of the resident more convenient

If a facility fails to follow these guidelines, then it will be violating the rights of the resident.

Nursing Home Restraint Injuries:

Physical injuries are easier to identify in the case of physical restraints. You can identify these injuries by checking rope burns, bruising on ankles and wrists, increased risk of infection, and soreness. A resident may also suffer from muscle atrophy as being trapped on the bed restricts mobility. They can also suffer stiffness, bone density, and constipation.

Physical restraint causes emotional and psychological trauma. Residents who stay in restraints for long periods develop emotional and mental distress. It is hard to detect the injuries associated with chemical restraints, but they lead to serious injuries and death.

The use of restraints should always be authorized by the doctor or medical professional. The authorization should also include the time for which physical restraints will be used.

Without a doctor’s authorization, only a qualified nurse can use physical restraints on a resident in an emergency. Moreover, the use of restraints should also be noted in the resident’s medical record.

Similarly, the use of chemical restraints can only be prescribed by a doctor or licensed nurse. The chemical restraint must be aligned with the resident’s underlying medical condition. The treatment should be consistent with the policies, procedures, and diagnosis of the resident in the nursing home.

Speak to an Expert Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer:

Get in touch with our experienced nursing home abuse attorney to know about your legal rights. If you or your loved ones suffered any harm due to physical or chemical restraints, get in touch with our attorneys to build a strong claim. We have years of experience in holding nursing homes liable for abuse cases. Get a consultation to know about the best legal possibilities of your case. We aim to get successful outcomes for your case.