Nursing home residents who are not able to breath on their own may rely on a breathing tube to help ensure they get the oxygen they need. Typically, when a nursing home resident needs a breathing tube, he or she also requires a ventilator and will need to be fed through a feeding tube. Because those on breathing tubes depend on nursing home staff both to keep the breathing tube clean and free of debris and to provide them with life-sustaining nutrition, these individuals are literally dependent on nursing home staff to keep them alive.
Nursing homes assume the responsibility of providing reasonable care when they take in a patient, and for those using a breathing tube, this means that nursing home staff must be extra vigilant in monitoring the patient. When staff is neglectful and a breathing tube becomes clogged, oxygen deprivation can occur, causing serious injuries and even death.
A patient who suffers damage as a result of a clogged breathing tube may be eligible for compensation from the nursing home for the costs of all future medical care made necessary due to the oxygen deprivation. If death results, surviving family members of the victim may file a wrongful death lawsuit. To obtain compensation in any type of claim against the nursing home, it is advisable to seek assistance from a Georgia nursing home abuse lawyer.
McDonough, Georgia Nursing Home Abuse and Clogged Breathing Tubes
Breathing tubes can become clogged with phlegm, saliva or other substances and those with a breathing tube in their mouth are not able to speak out or communicate their distress.
Because of the severe dangers of a clogged breathing tube and the risks of clogs, nursing homes have certain obligations to breathing tube patients. When a nursing home resident has a breathing tube, part of providing reasonable care for the patient involves keeping the tube in clean and working order. This means that trained staff must inspect the tube regularly, monitor the resident’s breathing, and keep the breathing tube clean. Unfortunately, this can fall through the cracks due to understaffed nursing homes, insufficiently trained staff, disinterested staff or poor nursing home policies.
The consequences of failure to monitor and keep a breathing tube clean are often tragic. A clogged breathing tube can cut off oxygen, leading to brain damage within minutes and to a frightening death as a result of suffocation. The cost to provide life-sustaining care if the victim becomes severely brain damaged as a result of the oxygen deprivation can be very high, and the cost of a premature death due to nursing home negligence is immeasurable.
Getting Help from a McDonough, Georgia Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer
Under Georgia law, victims who suffer an injury due to neglect or abuse in a nursing home can recover compensation from the care provider and the nursing home. Failure to keep a breathing tube clear is typically a clear-cut case of neglect, meaning the nursing home is likely to be required to pay compensation including medical costs, pain and suffering and emotional distress. The nursing home may also be required to pay wrongful death damages to surviving family members if the clogged breathing tube causes death by suffocation.
Do You Suspect Your Loved One Is Being Subjected To Nursing Home Abuse?
If you believe your loved one may be the victim of nursing home neglect or abuse you should speak with an experienced nursing home abuse attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our office directly at 855.GA.INJURY or 404.991.5950 to schedule your free consultation.