You may have never heard of “intake” and “output”, but these are important measurements taken by a healthcare facility, and they play a large part in reducing the risk of patient infection. Essentially, intake covers what patients drink and how much of it; output refers to the number of cubic centimeters or “cc’s” a patient has urinated. These are important aspects of care and treatment to record because dehydration can lead quickly to infection in patients. Nutrition is important as well because certain vitamins and nutrients can help prevent and fight off infection before it becomes fatal. Intake and output are especially important for seniors, who generally have a higher risk of infection. Many nursing homes and hospitals face lawsuits each year for failure to prevent harm from infection. Many of these lawsuits stem from healthcare facilities’ knowledge that infection was likely to occur given individual patient health conditions, facility deficiencies, and inadequate staffing numbers.
Negligence at Healthcare Facilities Can Result In Infections
Hospitals and nursing homes are aware of which health conditions can contribute to infections and which patients have those health conditions. For example, a number of seniors suffer from pressure ulcers each year, which can lead to septic shock. Those with circulation problems are at a higher risk as well. Upon admission, patients should receive an assessment that details each patient’s current conditions. When hospitals are understaffed, nurses can be in such a rush that an assessment is never performed, or it can be quickly glossed over.
Some complaints against healthcare facilities list failures to do assessments, among other deficiencies, which is why pressure ulcers and other issues go unnoticed and why a senior may experience septic shock “suddenly.” Without proper care and treatment, which should be detailed in every patient’s treatment plan, seniors can suffer from pressure ulcers that can quickly go from a stage I to a stage IV condition.
How a Patient Advocate Can Help Before You Need an Attorney
It’s a good idea to contact an attorney when a hospital or nursing home has harmed a senior, but preventing an injury or fatality is better by far. Unfortunately, it’s too possible for many to get stuck trying to fight hospitals and other facilities on their own so their loved ones receive the right care and treatment. This is hard, given that the average person isn’t a medical expert, doesn’t know how to read medical records, and doesn’t know important rules and regulations regarding health facility protocol. This is why patient advocate services like VBPA exist today.
A major part of being a patient advocate is knowing how healthcare facilities are required to operate, being familiar with medical conditions and how to treat them, and knowing who to speak to regarding important matters. A patient advocate serves as the patient’s eyes and ears to ensure healthcare facilities honor their commitments.
Bedside Monitoring: An Invaluable Resource
Values Based Patient Advocate can provide you or a loved one with bedside monitoring, which is an invaluable service to have. With bedside monitoring, you or a loved one will receive the proper nutrition according to dietary needs, the right amount of fluids, daily assessments and other forms of care and treatment.
Elder abuse, sometimes, goes beyond neglect. There have been cases of physical assaults and batteries, sexual abuse, financial abuse and more. Bedside monitoring can help prevent and discover these issues as well. Patient advocates can also help with understanding billing to avoid fraudulent billing practices, revealing patients’ rights, understanding a diagnosis, getting a second opinion, filing insurance claims, lowering medical bills and more.
If you or a loved one has questions or concerns regarding healthcare, getting disability, insurance claims or nursing home recommendations, contact us immediately. You shouldn’t have to do this alone. With Values Based Patient Advocates, you can have someone to count on when you need it.
Our Patient Advocate Office is ever just an email or phone call away: 703-222-1300 – we’re happy to help! A phone call is free and it could save a life or reduce a large hospital bill.