If your loved one is in a Chicago nursing home, you may have spent the last two years more concerned about them than ever because of their vulnerability to COVID-19.
Unfortunately, we are still battling COVID. And nursing home residents continue to be at risk, particularly when negligent care facilities violate the rules and procedures designed to protect them.
Recently, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of vaccine mandates for people working in healthcare facilities that accept federal funding, including most nursing homes. The mandate is intended to protect people.
However, vaccination rules could ultimately harm care facility patients.
Facilities that do not comply with the order and employ unvaccinated workers expose seniors to COVID. Those who do comply with the mandate could face a staffing shortage, which is often a factor in nursing home neglect and abuse.
Sanitation and hygiene
Nursing homes have strict standards for keeping facilities clean and residents safe, whether we are in a pandemic or not. Violating these standards can cause serious health problems like infections and diseases.
When it comes to COVID, facilities should follow guidelines for mask-wearing, handwashing and disinfection. If they do not, they increase patients’ chances of contracting COVID or another illness.
Treating mental health
Quarantine and social distancing measures have taken a tremendous toll on everyone. However, they can be especially damaging for seniors in care facilities.
Care providers that isolate patients and restrict visitation must address the impact this has on mental health. Under such circumstances, patients can struggle with depression, accelerated cognitive decline and anxiety.
Failing to treat patients and provide meaningful connections and outlets can be emotionally neglectful and abusive.
Holding dangerous facilities accountable
When followed, these measures provide valuable protection for our vulnerable loved ones. Unfortunately, too many parties fail to uphold even basic standards in nursing homes.
Should this negligence result in physical or emotional damages to patients, victims and their families have the right to hold facilities accountable.