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    For the trial law and legal community from a private investigator's perspective. The Beacon Bulletin is the weekly newsletter authored and published by our parent company, Beacon Network Investigations, LLC (BNI). We're a private investigation company. We DON'T dispense legal advice, respond to anonymous queries or black hat your enemies for you. (Internally, however, points are alloted for perfectly wordsmithed compliments.) We DO hope to inform. That's our business.
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  • Recent Posts

Assisted Living Facility Injuries

broken hip

Collectively, we are living longer.  That’s the good news.  Increased age, however, may become problematic in selecting one’s residence in latter years.  Often, health concerns prohibit our elderly family members from living at home or with family.  As potential caregivers, we wish to make parents and grandparents as comfortable as possible but if there are medical or housing issues, our desires are secondary to proper daily healthcare and well-being management.   Often, families and seniors look to assisted living facilities for elder residential and medical care.  The hope is to find a caring and attentive senior living facility but that is all too often not the case. Generally through negligence rather than malevolence, elderly people in these type of institutions are getting hurt- too often, from preventative injuries such as hip fractures.

The Journal of the American Medical Association reports that there are around 300,000 people in this age group who suffer from a broken hip each year. Of those, 20 to 30% will be dead within 12 months of the injury, and many others show a significant decrease in their functional abilities.

 

Main Causes of Broken Hips in the Elderly

The main causes of broken hips in the elderly are slips and falls. In an assisted living facility, falls are fairly common.  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that the average 100-bed nursing home reports 100 to 200 falls each year and that around 1,800 patients who fall die from their injuries.

There are many reasons that seniors in nursing homes may fall. Their muscles are weaker, their balance may be off, vertigo, poor eyesight and the physical limitations of moving from one place to another.  However, these problems are often exacerbated by negligence within the nursing home.

Of the reported falls each year, around 27% are due to environmental hazards. Some of the most common hazards include:

  • Wet floors
  • Inadequate lighting
  • Wheelchairs and beds that are not properly fitted to the patient
  • Improper monitoring and not providing assistance

Each of these hazards is preventable, and they are considered nursing home neglect when a patient is injured.

A thorough investigation should include a through review of the resident’s medical records, daily activity reports, maintenance records, incident reports, prior litigation involving the facility, identifying and interviewing potential witnesses, and many other factors that will become evident once an investigation is underway.

Broken hips in the elderly are serious, and when they occur due to nursing home abuse or negligence, you need to contact a lawyer for assistance to determine your rights in the situation.

Facebook Quizzes, Cute And A Perfect Tool For Identity Thieves.

Just about everyone on Facebook has been drawn to taking one of those “Share with your friends” quizzes – the last widely spread lure being “What Is Your Elf On A Shelf Name?”.  Full disclosure: I was halfway through that one myself when I realized what I do for a living. <facepalm>  In my defense, who doesn’t love a good quiz?  Aside from my Elf name, I was curious to know which Disney princess I am and what food matches my personality. Not smart.

Quite a few police departments have issued a Facebook quiz scam alert, warning that those “harmless” quizzes may not actually be all that harmless after all.

Think about the security questions we have to answer to just about every one of our online accounts – banking, credit reporting agencies, even Expedia, etc.   Who was your first-grade teacher? What was your favorite pet’s name? What’s the first name of your childhood best friend?  By providing this information in a social media quiz, you may be handing hackers the keys to your identity.  Hackers then build a profile of you through several different data sources.

An example of how quiz scamming works:

This quiz uses the first letter of your first name and your birth month to determine your “Elf” name. So, when you post your response, online hackers can figure out your birth month and then click through to your profile page to get more information.

facebook quiz scam alert

A nugget of information in isolation may not seem like a big deal, but combining that with other data that may be out there can result in a greater threat,” says Rachel Rothman, Chief Technologist for the Good Housekeeping Institute. “Be mindful of photos or posts that could give away information about your location or self (like your birthday) and consider if you are posting something that could be used to locate you offline or make it easier for someone to figure out any of your passwords.”

While the person posting and sharing these quizzes usually has innocent intentions, your response puts the information out there for all to see. That can be scammers or, as the Better Business Bureau points out, data mining companies who sell your information to other businesses.

With Valentine’s Day coming up this week, please resist the urge to respond to “What Does Your Valentine’s Day Cookie Say?” or “What Will Happen To You This Valentine’s Day”.  I can answer those two questions for you right now: 1. “If all you got for Valentine’s Day was this lousy cookie, consider dating someone else.” and “A lot or nothing.” There you go: informed, safe and sound.

BNI Operatives: Situationally aware.

As always, stay safe.

 

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