Many emotions surround putting the care of a beloved family member in the hands of someone else, especially when it comes to nursing homes. Many times, these individuals are no longer able to care for themselves, but still feel emotionally attached to their homes, their personal belongings, and a lifetime of memories that may be slowly fading.
A nursing home’s objective is to provide care and comfort to these individuals, ensuring that their final years are lived to the fullest that they can be. However, not all nursing homes carry out this objective very well. Administrators may abuse their authority and fail to uphold their responsibility by cutting corners. Most of the time, these corners are cut during the hiring process.
Individuals who work in a nursing home need to be responsible, caring, and able to quickly adapt to the changing environment and needs of the people they serve. They should also have training in different health fields to ensure that they can provide the best possible care. In this article, your trusted Nursing Home Malpractice Attorneys at Branch & Dhillon look into the definition of negligent hiring and how such practices can potentially lead to nursing home abuse.
What Is Negligent Hiring?
Negligent hiring is a legal term that is used to bring a claim against an employer who has failed to take the necessary steps to screen candidates for their job openings to make sure they are picking qualified individuals. If the employer had taken the proper steps to perform the hiring process correctly, then incompetent or even potentially dangerous individuals would not have been hired and therefore, wouldn’t have been able to cause the plaintiff harm.
What Would a Responsible Nursing Home Employer Look For?
Nursing homes, much like doctor’s offices and hospitals, need to do a full background check before they can even consider offering an individual a job. The following needs to be provided:
- References from previous employers
- Certifications and licenses that shows that the individual can handle the job
- Drug testing
- Medical exams
- Driving records
- Credit checks
- Criminal screening
- College degrees from validating fields or colleges
If an employer offers the job to an individual who does not have the correct qualifications or temperament to work in nursing, there could be horrible consequences for the residents. The elderly individuals rely heavily on the nurses, therapists, and other staff members who care for them. Examples of negligent hiring are as follows:
- An individual is hired as a nurse but she has either no certification or her certification is expired. This could lead to her giving the wrong medication to a resident.
- An individual who was hired but they have a record of aggravated assault and they attacked a resident who they claim was being difficult.
- A cook is hired who has no proper training and ends up serving food that is either undercooked or goes against the patient’s dietary needs, leading to a horrible illness/allergic reaction.
What Are the Consequences of Negligent Hiring?
When nursing home administrators seek to cut corners by bringing on staff members that are not qualified for the job, they risk creating poor practices that put the residents’ health at risk. Nursing home residents are already vulnerable as they are placing their health and wellbeing in the hands of doctors, nursing staff, and other nursing home team members. Serious consequences and neglect can occur when these staff members fail to perform their duties correctly. Negligent hiring puts residents at risk for medication errors, physical or sexual abuse, or even emotional abuse.
The physical, emotional, and financial harm that can be caused to the residents and their loved ones is serious. Here are some of the most common results of negligent hiring:
- Residents having fractures
- Residents developing bedsores
- Residents getting scratched, bruised, or having lacerations
- Residents falling or being struck, leading to concussions or traumatic brain injuries
- Humiliation of the resident
- Residents being purposefully isolated from the other residents
- Residents having their personal belongings stolen
- Financial fraud
- Residents being neglected and suffering from dehydration or malnutrition
- Serious illnesses or death resulting from medication errors.
Was Your Loved One Injured In a Nursing Home?
The team at Branch & Dhillon understands how betrayed, hurt, and outraged you and your loved one feel after they have been injured due to negligence in a nursing home. You placed your trust and care in the staff to treat your loved one with care, dignity, and respect. Instead, your loved one must now deal with emotional and physical injuries, a long recovery process, and reduced quality of life. Our caring lawyers can help you and your loved one get the compensation you deserve by acting as your advocates in court. We are prepared to endlessly seek justice. Contact us today for information on our services or to schedule a consultation with our team!