The Covid-19 pandemic has brought chaos on our country that no one under the age of 80 has ever experienced. It has sequestered people from each other including their family. My parents are 81 and 79 respectively. I have not been able to see them in person for more than four weeks. They are fortunate because they can isolate themselves in their homes and stay away from others who may be sick or carrying the virus. Unfortunately for many elderly catching the virus is a death sentence.
The 1.5 million people who live in assisted living and nursing homes are at an even greater risk. These long-term care facilities are much more susceptible to being over run by the virus resulting in the death of a large percentage of their residents. In New Jersey, the National Guard was deployed to help control an outbreak of the corona virus after it killed 10 residents in two weeks. And because of the nature of the virus almost all nursing homes have been quarantined.
This separation keeps them separated from family members and friends that are vital to their happiness but more importantly are often a critical watchdog to ensure that patients are receiving proper treatment and care. As an attorney who has litigated nursing home cases and seen the very worst of what occurs I understand the importance of family and friends watching over their loved ones.
It is very frustrating having a spouse, parent, sibling or child at a nursing home during this time of separation. The elderly patients under the best of circumstances are exposed to injuries from bedsores, infections, falls and fractures. A recent article in AARP discussed the issues that are being faced by people with loved ones in long term care.
Here are some tips that you can do to try to ensure your family member, in addition to not being exposed to the coronavirus, is receiving proper treatment:
In Benton and Washington County you can contact them here:
1410 SE 14th Street
Bentonville, AR 72712
1-888-268-3610 or (479) 273-9424
If you live in another part of Arkansas you can contact them by going to this website:https://www.arombudsman.com/.
Our long-term health care workers are a vital part of the care received by our elderly. They are under enormous stress and it is important that the nursing home owners do everything they need to do to ensure that their employees receive the support necessary to do their job. While you are limited there are steps that can be given to you the peace of mind that you have done all you can.
Sean Keith has been representing those injured by the negligence of others for over 25 years.