Nursing home residents who wander off on their own away from the facility can suffer some serious injuries. Wandering off alone is also known as elopement.
According to federal nursing home regulations it is mandatory for every resident to be assessed when entering a facility, and the assessment must be updated at regular intervals or when their medical condition changes.
The assessment should include a plan of the proposed line of care for the resident, together with an analysis of the resident’s capacity to function on his/her own. Depending on this assessment, the resident has to be supervised with an appropriate level of care. The assessment will also be the basis for the level of unsupervised access outside the premises of the facility.
Nothing to Ignore
It is not unusual for an elderly nursing home resident to suffer some type of dementia or become confused to an extent that he/she is not able to protect themselves from harm or unable mentally to understand their safety needs. If a resident suggests a high risk to wander or leave the facility without supervision, it is obligatory for the nursing home to put in place appropriate devices to prevent wandering or provide adequate staff for safeguarding such residents. In many cases only simple measures are needed to prevent such an occurrence.
Wandering off on one’s own can be attributed to improper or inadequate supervision, care or monitoring. If one of your loved ones in nursing home care has been injured for any of these reasons then do consult an injury attorney with experience in nursing home injury lawsuits for an evaluation of your case. You could well have grounds for a lawsuit and a claim for compensation.