Accurate medical records are critical in providing proper health care for any patient but perhaps even more so with elderly nursing home residents who often have numerable medical afflictions. Sometimes inaccuracies are honest mistakes, but as a Tampa nursing home lawyer knows from experience, other inaccuracies are the result of improper protocol and others are intentional.
Too often, the nursing home staff takes shortcuts in filling out medical records. As explained by a Tampa nursing home lawyer, this can include:
- Adding information to medical reports without verifying its accuracy; and
- Failing to add information required.
Common reasons for this failure lie with the nursing home facility itself. An inadequately trained staff and a lack of a sufficient number of staff members are recurring themes when a Tampa nursing home lawyer investigates nursing home abuse claims.
Essentially, an intentional inaccuracy means the medical record was falsified. The two primary reasons a Tampa nursing home attorney reports are:
- A staff member realized records were either incomplete or absent and at a later date tried to correct the problem; and
- After an injury or death, the nursing home intentionally falsified the records in an effort to cover up their failings and reduce their liability.
A less common record falsification observed by a Tampa nursing home lawyer involves forging consent forms for patient sedation, which is another indication of an inadequate or poorly trained staff.
Uncovering the Deception
Unfortunately, after a loved one is injured or worse, it is difficult to unravel the issue and determine liability. Some suggestions a Tampa nursing home lawyer offers include:
- Thoroughly examine the patient’s medical records.
- Compare entries for known treatments with the dates entered.
- Look to see if any part of the record is duplicative, repetitive or very similar.
- Compare charted prescription dosages with pharmacy records.
Contact a Tampa Nursing Home Attorney for Legal Advice
Nursing homes have a duty of care to their patients. If your loved one has not received proper care, you must be their advocate. For any concerns, call Peter Giroux, a Tampa nursing home lawyer, at (727) 895-5399.