Those who take care of the elderly in homes or Hollywood and South Florida nursing homes can face a number of risks and injuries. At-home caregivers need support and need to be aware of the risks of their job. Those risks include:
- Slip and trip accidents. If spills and debris are left on the floor in the process of taking care of someone, these can pose a hazard. Similarly, if an elderly loved one spills items or drops items because of mobility issues, these can pose a risk to caregivers.
- Injuries caused by fatigue. Family caregivers can become overwhelmed by caretaking and the demands on their time. Even professional caregivers, nurses and staff in nursing homes can experience fatigue if they are asked to work too many shifts or experience many shift changes which affect sleep. In turn, fatigue can lead to mistakes and injuries on the job, fatigued driving and car accidents and health decline.
- Infections and illness. If an elderly person has an infestation, an infection or a communicable disease, it is important for caregivers to follow proper precautions to avoid becoming affected themselves.
- Strain injuries. Caregivers in the home and at nursing homes may need to help seniors in and out of bed, to and from the bathroom and may need to help lift them so medical and basic services can be provided. If proper protocol is not followed, caregivers and nursing home staff may suffer physical injuries such as strains, back pain and other medical issues.
- Physical injury and abuse. Elder abuse in Hollywood and across the country is a concern, but so is caregiver concern. When an elderly patient is suffering from dementia or other conditions they may become agitated and lash out. Caregiver abuse in Hollywood and communities can cause physical injury, emotional distress and a breakdown of the caregiver relationship.
What Can Be Done
There are several things which can be done to prevent caregiver injury:
- Nursing homes can institute safety polices. These policies should ensure staff have the right support when moving patients, when confronted with aggressive patients and when facing other dangers. It is important for nursing homes to provide staff with proper training and to not overwork staff until they are too fatigued to perform their job safely.
- Caregivers can get support. There are support groups and respite care for caregivers, which can offer help for caregivers in difficult situations. Doctors can also help address any issues which can be causing physical harm or injury to caregivers.
- Family caregivers can placed loved ones in care. When family caregivers become overwhelmed with caring for an elderly loved one and can no longer provide care which is safe for both the senior and the caregiver, a safe care environment can be one option to explore.
Have you been injured while working at nursing home in Hollywood or South Florida? You may qualify for Hollywood workers’ compensation benefits and you may wish to discuss your situation with a Hollywood nursing home attorney. Contact Flaxman Law Group 1-866-352-9626 (1-866-FLAXMAN) for a free consultation with an attorney.