Practicing Fire Safety and Nursing Home Coverage

Running a nursing home comes with a great amount of responsibility for many lives. If a fire were to break out, without proper planning it would be difficult to ensure the safety of the elderly residents living in these homes. Owners need nursing home insurance coverage for a variety of risks and concerns pertaining to this industry, but safety for both staff and residents should be foremost in their minds. As a broker, you should ask your client a few specific questions pertaining to what is being done to keep residents safe in an emergency.

Is the building well maintained and are there safety systems in place, such as well-marked exits, smoke detectors, and sprinklers? Does the staff take time to ensure that paper and other storage items do not block doors or hallways that should be kept clear at all times? Is there an evacuation plan that involves all staff members and that is practiced regularly? Is staff available around the clock to carry out an escape plan if there is a fire or other danger?

Nursing home management must take safety planning seriously and also hold and attend regular safety meetings to address any concerns or changes in the operations of the facility. Families of residents should also be provided information when any changes take place.

Practicing fire safety can save lives

While flames are a great concern during a fire an even more pressing issue is smoke, which can travel faster to areas far from the fire and cause choking, loss of visibility, and smoke inhalation concerns. It’s important to understand that people living in nursing homes may have trouble evacuating quickly due to mobility issues or other disabilities. Therefore, proper planning and training is important in order to provide for the safety of all residents.

Every facility must have written fire procedures that are practiced by all staff. Each staff member should be responsible for carrying out his or her part of these procedures. This should include everyone employed by the facility. In the event of a fire, someone should be assigned to activate the fire alarm, evacuate everyone in immediate danger, use fire extinguishers to help control the fire, close doors to contain smoke and fire, and make sure no residents are left behind.

Proper planning can help to reduce any imminent danger when a fire breaks out, and nursing home insurance coverage can help your client pay the costs for repairs and get the facility back in good condition.

Lawsuits and Nurses Malpractice Insurance

Nurses are responsible for the care and safety of their patients. Unfortunately, in these types of situations, a patient may claim that neglect or abuse occurred at the hands of their caregiver, and this could swing the burden of proof that no wrongdoing actually happened on the part of the nurse. These types of accusations often occur at nursing homes where nurses are often isolated with patients. A patient suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s may actually believe something bad has happened to them when that is not the actual case.

Nurses need to carry nurses malpractice insurance, either through their employer or have their own personal policy to combat such allegations. This is helpful to defend against lawsuits in the event the family of a resident or a patient (in the case of a hospital) feels that they became the victim of abuse, or been taken advantage of financially or otherwise.

Accusations, even false ones, often bear weight

The stress of a hospital or nursing home establishment can have an adverse effect on a caregiver. As elderly citizens become more physically frail, they’re less able to stand up to bullying or fight back if attacked when such issues become prevalent. Such acts are viewed as criminally negligent at their worst, and if proven, can lead to costly judgments against the accused. Mental or physical ailments may make many patients of all ages more trying companions for those responsible for providing them with care. More than half a million reports of abuse are reported to authorities every year, while many more cases may go unreported.

Physical abuse

Victims and their families often report physical abuse or the use of force against a patient that results in physical pain, injury, or impairment. Such abuse includes physical assaults, such as hitting or shoving, inappropriate use of, or dispensing of drugs, harmful use of restraints on patients, or confinement for unusually long lengths of time. Such behavior is intolerable and there is a need for more stringent observation of nurses providing assistance to patients deemed difficult to care for.

Emotional abuse      

In the case of emotional or psychological abuse, nurses may be speaking to or treating a patient in ways that may cause emotional pain or distress. Verbal forms of emotional abuse include intimidation through yelling or threats, humiliation and ridicule, or even nonverbal psychological abuse, such as ignoring any requests or needs as expressed by the patient, isolating them from friends or activities, or terrorizing or menacing them. Such accusations, whether they’re warranted or not, will usually need a defense. Having nurses malpractice insurance can provide your client with the necessary defense that can threaten a career, and create a serious financial burden.