Attorneys for COVID-19 Nursing Home Injuries and Deaths in Texas

Nursing Home Injuries Covid 19

42% of all COVID-19 deaths have been in assisted living facilities, as of May, according to the Foundation for Research on Equal Opportunity which measured 43 states in the US. Forbes states that these nursing homes and other facilities are home to .62% of the United States population or 2.1 million citizens. It is a disheartening tragedy that less than 1% of the United States is bearing a large portion of the burden of the pandemic. Forbes also notes that some states report that as many as 81% of COVID-19 deaths were nursing home residents.

The elderly have the highest risk of all demographics making the poor handling of infection prevention at nursing homes and healthcare facilities a deadly reality for thousands of vulnerable people. Long before the COVID-19 pandemic, infection control was an issue in most of the 36,000+ licensed, operating, nursing home facilities in the United States. Diseases have plagued nursing home facilities increasingly over time. Between 2013-2017, 82 percent of all nursing homes and assisted living facilities examined were given citations for an infection prevention and control deficiency, according to the United States Government Accountability Office (GAO). COVID-19 brought this ongoing problem to the fore in truly unfortunate ways.

Tate Rehmet Law Office’s injury attorneys are here to assist with nursing home malpractice issues related to the coronavirus or COVID-19 pandemic. Our attorneys are watching for developments in healthcare laws at the federal, state, and local levels. And, we are guiding clients in regard to legal developments surrounding nursing home care, helping them to understand their rights if they have been injured due to the negligence of healthcare facilities or medical professionals. Tate Law Offices nursing home injury attorneys are ready to assist with these and other pandemic-related healthcare injury claims.

Several shortcomings have played a part in how COVID-19 was able to rapidly spread through nursing home facilities. The following are some of the most common forms of malpractice, many of which are reasons for GAO citations:

lack of personal protective equipment (PPE) such as gloves, surgical masks, and face shields
failure to use or improper use of PPE
absence of sufficient hand cleaning hygiene
failure to isolate sick patients
failure to impose timely visitation restrictions
lack of adherence to visitation restrictions
lack of routine testing for presence of infections such as tuberculosis (TB)
lack of food safety
failure to test healthcare facility employees
absence of protocols and other measures designed to prevent a disease outbreak by maintaining a clean or sterile environment

Nursing home deficiencies have led to ineffective and dangerously unprepared responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite limiting visitation, many nursing homes continued to allow ill patients to share dining rooms and other common spaces, which proved to be a dire mistake since the disease can readily spread in areas even with physical distancing by remaining in the air and on surfaces for several hours. Without effective air filtering and careful surface cleaning, COVID-19 can be transferred without close proximity between two people. To prevent this a strict and frequent cleaning protocol is critical for patient safety.

To make matters worse, many nursing homes have failed to properly track cases. Some facilities say they have failed to report fully on outbreaks to protect the privacy of their residents. Proper reporting is essential for experts to effectively measure and track the spread of the virus, as well as understand the groups most at risk for contraction and resulting fatalities. So, the actual numbers of infections and fatalities may be higher than presently recorded, leading to an even greater tragedy.

In Texas, there is a good chance that care in a nursing facility is not up to regulation or practicing safe or acceptable standards. The state of Texas has the worst assisted living facility quality score in the nation according to Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services which takes into account the scope and severity of deficiencies identified during the two most recent annual inspections for nursing homes in each state. Nursing homes and health care facilities must be held liable for their errors, given how many lives have been exposed to harm due to negligence, malpractice, and poor policy. If you, a family member or friend have been injured in a healthcare or nursing home facility due to issues related to COVID-19, we encourage you to consult with a qualified medical malpractice attorney. The injury attorneys at Tate Rehmet Law Office have deep experience with Texas injury claims. We provide free consultations for injured parties and can help you assess your case any legal claims regarding your injuries.

Don’t hesitate to call us now to begin examining your legal options. You can reach at (903) 892-4440. We are here 24/7 to talk to you about your case via phone, chat, or email.