Nursing home neglect in Utah is a major problem – but nursing home abuse and neglect are particularly hazardous during the winter months. Winter in Utah is an extreme season, one that can be deadly if you are not prepared for it. The elderly are especially vulnerable to cold and weather extremes, which is why it’s so important for nursing homes to practice vigilance when caring for them. Unfortunately, not all nursing home staff do.
Winter is the Most Dangerous Time for Nursing Home Neglect in Utah
There are multiple ways in which winter can be deadly for neglected nursing home patients. These include:
1. Neglected nursing home patients can wander off in extreme cold.
One primary reason families must entrust their elderly loved ones to nursing homes is because of dementia. Elderly with significant dementia often require constant care and supervision. If the nursing home staff are not paying close attention, patients can wander off on their own. They may leave the safety of the facility and go out into the cold. If they are out too long or become lost, the cold could injure them or even kill them.
2. Patients are vulnerable to frostbite.
Human skin can sustain damage in cold temperatures when left unprotected. Normally, most people are mindful of the discomfort of the cold and take adequate steps to protect themselves. But elderly individuals experiencing cognitive decline or limited in their movements due to health issues may not be aware or able to protect themselves. Nursing home staff should make sure that all patients are adequately clothed based on the weather – but not all do.
3. Facilities may not keep interiors as warm as they should.
Some nursing home facilities may attempt to save money on heating bills and put residents at risk. It may be hard to imagine a facility being so careless, but it can happen. Cooler interior temperatures may be tolerable to staff who are walking around and working, but intolerable for residents who cannot move.
Check on Your Loved Ones During the Winter
Depending on your circumstances, you may not have had a chance to visit your loved one in the nursing home lately. It is always a good idea to check in from time to time – but particularly in the winter and summer when temperature extremes can prove hazardous. If you notice any of the above issues, please get in touch with our firm. While you can file a complaint with the state, our attorney can help you take legal action against those responsible. We take nursing home abuse in Utah seriously and are here to help you understand your legal options.
If you have questions about filing a nursing home abuse lawsuit in Utah, please get in touch. You can call us at (801) 845-4577 or complete our secure online contact form now and we will get back to you shortly.