The Link Between Diabetes & Nursing Home Neglect

Diabetes is one of the most common illnesses among nursing home residents. According to the BMC Nursing medical journal, roughly 18% of the U.S. nursing home population is diagnosed with diabetes. As a result, a large number of residents need extra care to ensure that they do not suffer the detrimental effects of the disease. However, as with other chronic conditions and diseases, a lack of staff, insufficient care guidelines, and more can lead to neglect for those with diabetes. 

Nursing Home Care for Diabetes Patients

Luckily, most nursing homes are equipped with the training to help treat and care for patients with diabetes. That’s the good news, but unfortunately, as we have seen in many cases, nursing homes may still be understaffed or negligent in addressing specific care concerns resulting in serious illness or death. This is particularly applicable to patients with diabetes as they need regular attention and medicines to ensure their optimal health. 

According to the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, seniors with diabetes are more likely to also suffer from depression and other mental health issues, as well as:

  • Alzheimer’s disease and other cognitive impairments
  • Amputations
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Falls
  • High blood pressure
  • Strokes
  • Urinary incontinence
  • Other chronic diseases
  • Lower life expectancy and death

This means that any amount of neglect could easily result in an increase in other illnesses, serious falls, and other medical emergencies.

In nursing homes, a diabetic patient should be receiving regular blood sugar level checks, needed medicines such as insulin injections, proper and controlled diet, foot checks, and extra monitoring for falls. In many cases, diabetes patients may experience nerve damage, especially in their feet, which can lead to bedsores and gangrene. Simple checks and consistent monitoring could save a patient from developing these more serious medical problems. 

What You Can Do

As a caregiver or loved one, it may be difficult for you to be there to ensure these things are done. It’s important to discuss a thorough diabetes care plan with the nursing home staff as well as the administration, as well as address any lapses in care you do notice. Though nursing homes should already be prepared for caring for diabetic residents, it is important to be diligent and look for instances where the resident may not be getting the proper nutrition, receiving insulin injections if needed as part of their care, properly monitored for falls, or not having their injuries and other hygiene concerns addressed. 

Proper medical care and medicine administration is a huge part of nursing home care and a major reason why people choose to live in nursing homes and other care facilities. These issues must be addressed as much as other care concerns. 

If you or a loved one have experienced nursing home abuse or neglect, call Gharibian Law (877-875-1119) for a free consultation and the best legal representation.