Unsanitary conditions in nursing homes are particularly dangerous because it increases the risk of spreading infectious diseases. According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, there are several areas where nursing home patients are at particular risk of infectious disease if the nursing home does not maintain sanitary conditions. These include:
- Unclean bathrooms;
- Failure to properly clean laundry using appropriate temperatures, water level, and amount of bleach;
- Dirty kitchen surfaces, rags, sponges, mops;
- Raw or undercooked food items; and
- Mismanagement of medical waste.
The failure of a nursing home to maintain sanitary conditions in these areas can place the elderly and others at increased risk of infection.
Negligence and Unsanitary Nursing Home Conditions
Under New York law, nursing homes are required to provide residents with safe, clean and comfortable rooms and surroundings. If the nursing home fails to provide these conditions, the injured resident has the right to bring a lawsuit for damages or other relief for deprivations or infringements of a patient’s right to adequate and proper treatment and care.
In order to prove that a nursing home is liable for one’s injuries from unsanitary conditions, one must establish that the nursing home or its employees were negligent. In particular, to prove negligence, one must establish that:
- The nursing home or its employees breached its standard of care to the patient, e.g. failed to provide clean and sanitary living conditions;
- The patient suffered an injury as a result of this breach. For example, the failure to provide clean living conditions directly caused the patient an infection; and
- The nursing home or its employees caused the unsanitary living condition.
Nursing homes will often try to present various defenses to argue why they should not be liable for injuries. In particular, a nursing home may argue that a patient’s pre-existing medical condition actually caused the injury and not anything that the nursing home did or did not do. Or, a nursing home may try to claim that it provided the minimum level of care required under the law. In order to protect your rights, it is important to have an experienced New York nursing home negligence attorney who can investigate and help you understand your case.
Contact a New York Negligence Nursing Home Attorney
Negligence in nursing homes occurs far too often throughout the United States. If you or a loved one is a victim of negligence in a nursing home, an experienced New York nursing home negligence attorney can help protect your rights. At Peters, Berger, Koshel & Goldberg, P.C., we employ a team of knowledgeable attorneys who have extensive experience helping nursing home victims recover compensation for their injuries suffered as a result of unsanitary conditions and other negligence in nursing homes.