Unfortunately, we’ve noticed Clinical Negligence claims involving falls in hospitals are still common, especially among the elderly.
Falls can happen for a number of reasons and not all of them will be because of negligence.
Unfortunately, many falls in hospital are avoidable if the proper risk factors have been identified and nursing staff made aware of them.
Have you or a loved one experienced a fall in hospital that could have been avoided? This could be Clinical Negligence. Get in touch with our expert team now: 01202 315005 or email@example.com
Falls can cause:
Further injury, increasing the patient’s time in hospital and leading to further care being necessary.
A serious detrimental effect on patients mentally as their confidence can be knocked, making it difficult for them to reach the same level of mobility that they had prior to the fall.
In severe cases, death.
A common cause of complaint is lack of proper equipment which has resulted in a fall. Hospitals should undertake a detailed multifactorial assessment as each patient is admitted.
This assessment should cover basic information, identifying;
Any fall history
Mobility or muscle weakness
Urinary problems, such as Urinary Tract Infections (UTI’s).
We recently acted for an elderly client who sustained a fall at hospital which resulted in a fractured hip. Although she was noted to be at risk of falling, the Trust failed to move her closer to the nurse’s station, put bed rails in place or put sensors on her bed mattress.
If any of these had been put in place it is unlikely that she would have sustained a fall and she would not have fractured her hip. In this case, the Hospital admitted liability and compensation was received. Luckily this patient recovered well, but this is not always the case.
Many patients will have a fall which will not be documented and an injury will not be diagnosed. This can lead to ongoing problems. It is vital that when a patient has a fall it is recorded within their notes and they are sent for proper examination such as a CT or MRI scan. This is essential even if there is no obvious injury.
Unfortunately, there have been many clinical negligence cases where treatment has not been provided following a fall leading to serious consequences.