What causes nursing home residents to wander away from the facility?
Many residents who live in nursing homes have some sort of health condition such as dementia or Alzheimer’s. These conditions affect their thinking, reasoning, and judgment capabilities. As a result, these patients are often confused and disoriented. Additionally, many of these residents suffer from memory loss and need constant supervision.
Because dementia and Alzheimer’s impacts residents’ brain function, these health conditions are one of the main causes of wandering off and elopement in nursing homes. This is because residents living with these conditions suffer from confusion and altered moods on a daily basis. When coupled with a lack of supervision, these types of patients are more likely to find themselves in dangerous situations such as wandering off of the premises.
This is why it is essential that nursing homes have enough staff and are not running lean. When the staff at a nursing home cannot give proper attention to residents, the elderly residents are more likely to get into potentially dangerous situations such as escaping from the facility or walking away unnoticed.
When nursing homes don’t properly train their staff, don’t supervise patients like they should, don’t use tracking devices or alarms, don’t address hazards, and don’t perform risk assessments or implement safety measures, they can be liable for patients wandering away from the facility. When nursing homes implement these things, they have a better chance of properly caring for their residents in order to reduce the number of residents wandering off.