If your loved one was physically restrained at a nursing home, and the restraint was not required for medical treatment, you may have a claim against the nursing home. Georgia’s federal regulations for nursing homes state that physical restraint may only be used when warranted by a medical condition, and then only as a last resort. Physical restraint can take many forms, but no nursing home should ever use physical restraint unless it is the only option for ensuring residents’ safety.
Physical restraint may refer to a number of things, including leg or arm restraints, hand mitts, soft ties, lap trays that residents cannot easily remove, and side rails. When side rails are necessary to keep a resident from falling out of bed, the rails should only be used as long as is absolutely necessary, after which point the nursing home should gradually transition the resident back to a bed without side rails.
Nursing homes should never use physical restraint to make things more convenient for staff, or to discipline a resident. If a resident’s medical condition requires physical restraint, nursing homes must fully inform the resident and obtain permission, if possible, before using the restraints. In every situation, nursing home staff should carefully consider whether or not the positive effects of using physical restraints outweigh the negative.
Sometimes, a resident may require physical restraints in connection with emergency care, in which case, provided the resident has not previously refused the same treatment, nursing home staff may use restraints for a short period of time. Additionally, restraints may be used on a resident whose violent behavior makes him or her a danger to others and/or to him or herself. In both cases, though, physical restraint should be used only as a last resort, and nursing homes should cease using restraints as soon as possible.
Any nursing home that physically restrains a resident unnecessarily is subject to Georgia state law, and as such, is responsible for compensating the abused resident, which may include covering the cost of related medical expenses, pain and suffering.
If your loved one was physically restrained at a nursing home or assisted living facility, and you are wondering if you have a claim, please feel free to call and speak to one of our experienced Georgia nursing home abuse lawyers today. Our consultations are always free. If you would like more information about this topic, be sure to click on our other videos, or better yet, click the subscribe button to subscribe to our YouTube channel. Thank you.