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Nursing home abuse

Wandering and Elopement Attorneys

Why Aren’t More Nursing Homes Using Wander Management Systems?

September 18, 2017 by Carrie Capouellez

If there was an easy way to keep residents safe, wouldn’t nursing homes jump at the opportunity? Wandering and elopement is one of the most dangerous things that can happen to a nursing home resident. Residents that need regular care or suffer a fall can find themselves far away from help. To help prevent dangerous situations caused by wandering and elopement, nursing homes can use wander management systems, but many nursing homes choose not to.

Wander Management Systems

Wander management systems consist of a small anklet or bracelet on a patient that tracks his or her location. If the patient travels outside of a certain area (like outside of their room) the system notifies staff so they can keep the resident from wandering. If staff is unable to immediately assist the resident, they can track the resident’s location via the anklet or bracelet, so the resident is never lost.

Wander management systems are ideal for patients suffering from mental diseases like dementia or Alzheimer’s because of memory loss and/or confusion that can cause them to leave their rooms or nursing home facilities. Wander management systems are also useful for patients suffering from other medical conditions that require frequent care or patients at a high risk for falls.

Some nursing home residents also experience restlessness, and deal with their anxiety by simply taking a walk. While this can help relieve their anxiety, it also puts them at extreme risk because they are distancing themselves from their care. However, with a wander management system, their location is always known, so nursing home staff is never too far away.

Why Aren’t More Nursing Homes Using Wander Management Systems?

Although there are plenty of wander management systems available on the market, many nursing homes are not utilizing these devices because of the extra cost. Many nursing homes believe staff can adequately protect residents from wandering and elopement, but this is rarely the case. Nursing homes are notoriously understaffed, and when the staff is stretched thin, they simply can’t keep a close eye on every patient. Using wander management systems is the best way to protect residents, but nursing homes refuse to pay the cost.

Wandering and Elopement Attorneys

Nursing homes are responsible for keeping residents safe at all times. This includes preventing residents from wandering away from their care or facility. If a nursing home fails to protect residents from wandering and elopement, they can be held responsible for their negligence. If your loved one experienced an injury after wandering away from a nursing home, contact the wandering and elopement attorneys at Lopez McHugh LLP today to learn your legal options.

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