The elder members of our society are the ones that need the best treatment and the most respect. But all too often senior citizens living in nursing homes suffer from nursing home negligence, abuse, and shocking instances of medical malpractice. One of the most common dangers in North Carolina assisted living facilities is medication errors.
Luckily, North Carolina has stepped up to make nursing homes and adult car facilities safer for their patients. The state created a four-star nursing home rating system last year in order to ensure that families knew about the car facilities they were placing their loved ones in. This year, the state has decided to enact even stricter standards regarding the rating system. While the vast majority of the nursing homes were receiving perfect ratings in the past, this new system of ratings will take in to account new factors and set tougher guidelines. Specifically, the new rating system will focus on whether or not the nursing home has a history of medication errors and whether or not the nursing home as a history of patient wandering incidents, injuries, or death.
Medication errors are more common than you might think in nursing home – with prescription drugs often being stolen by staff, lost, or forgotten. For elderly patients that may not have the ability to accurately know whether or not they are taking the right amount of medication, a medication error may not be caught until their health is in danger. In other cases, nursing homes may overmedicate their patients in an attempt to sedate them.