Repeated Falls Lead to Death of a Nursing Home Resident

An investigation into an Iowa nursing home has left the home with performance-related fines stemming from multiple incidents involving and leading to the death of one of its residents.

The resident had long and short term memory problems and was unable to safely walk on his own. Instead, he required the assistance and supervision of a staff member as he walked about, requiring that he be supervised at all times when he was moving so that he would not fall. Despite this need, the resident repeatedly was allowed to walk unassisted which resulted in him falling more than 50 times between January 2012 and June 17, 2013.

In June of this year, the resident was found on the floor of a hallway, unresponsive. Nursing home staff called for help and the resident was transported by ambulance to an area hospital where he was diagnosed with bleeding between the brain and the skull. Though the man received treatment while in the hospital, he died of the brain bleed just four days later.

The investigation determined that the man fell mostly in the afternoon and evening hours and that staff attempted to address some environmental issues related to the falls but that they did not adequately curb the behavior that led to the incidents.

Many nursing home residents have some form of memory loss and often this can make caring for the patient more difficult. If a resident forgets where he or she is, the resident may become scared and attempt to leave a room or a facility. Memory loss does not waive the duty of nursing home employees to appropriately care for and treat those under their care, including those who may forget that they need help when walking about a home. In this instance, there is some indication that the resident had been instructed not to walk about unassisted but that instruction was ineffective. The resident may not have been able to recall his walking problems but even if he did, his care was in the hands of those nursing home employees who should have been supervising him. Failing to do this led to this resident’s fall and ultimately his death.

Nursing home falls are a common form of nursing home neglect. A fall can occur with the help of an employee who improperly lifts or transfers a resident or without an employee’s intervention, as happened in this case. Failing to properly care for a resident can lead to serious injuries or even death and can be a violation of the standard of care required among nursing home employees.

When dealing with a nursing home, it can be very difficult to get a straight answer as to how your loved one was injured or hurt. If you suspect that your family member has been the victim of abuse, call the Illinois nursing home abuse lawyers at Abels & Annes, P.C. today for a free, no obligation telephone consultation. At Abels & Annes, P.C., we are ready to put our decades of experience to work fighting for your loved one’s rights and safety. We have a lawyer standing by now at (312) 924-7575 and we will never charge a fee unless we make a recovery on your behalf. Call us today and let us answer your nursing home abuse and neglect questions through a free case consultation.

Prior Blog Entries:

Nursing Home Abuse Continues to be Serious Threat In Illinois and Across Nation, Illinois Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Blog, published August 11, 2013.

Nurse’s Aid Charged with Manslaughter in Death of Resident, Illinois Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Blog, published July 26, 2013.


Nursing home cited in patient’s fall, death, by Matt Milner,, published August 29, 2013.


Contact Information