Slip and Fall Accidents in Hospitals: A Dual Perspective on Patient and Visitor Safety

Shahzad Masood

Slip and Fall Accidents in Hospitals

Slip and fall accidents in healthcare facilities may occur because of cracked or uneven flooring. An experienced slip and fall lawyer knows how to investigate the cause of these accidents and establish proper liability. Providing signage in hazardous areas or areas under maintenance helps prevent slips, trips, and falls in hospitals. Here are other ways to prevent these accidents and promote patient and visitor safety in healthcare setups:

Adding Anti-slip Floor Coating

Installing anti-slip floor coatings is a worthwhile investment to help hospitals avoid unexpected legal problems and minimize liability. These coatings help create textured floor surfaces that increase grip and traction. Non-slip coatings are ideal for hospitals with vinyl, wood, marble, or tile flooring, as these floors become slippery when wet.

Providing Ample Lighting

Ample lighting enables patients or visitors to see and avoid wet floors and other slip and fall hazards. Some areas needing adequate lighting in hospitals include walkways, parking lots, hallways, and staircases. Replacing unidirectional lighting fixtures with omnidirectional LED ones can help provide enough light in healthcare settings. Hospital staff also need to regularly check and replace burnt-out bulbs to prevent slip and fall accidents.

Maintaining Stairs and Handrails

Stairs in healthcare facilities need to be even and properly marked to prevent patient missteps and potential accidents. Handrails that are firmly anchored and mounted at appropriate heights reduce the risks of slips and falls. Hospital stairwells must have non-slip treads and proper handrails on both sides to enhance staff, patient, and visitor safety. 

Providing Adequate Patient Mobility Aids

Mobility aids enable patients to become more stable and independent when moving around a healthcare facility. The support from mobility aids helps prevent patient falls by minimizing the body weight added to lower limbs. Assistive equipment also reduces the risks of slips and falls by supporting patients when standing up. Some equipment that helps enhance patient safety in hospitals include grab bars, walkers, crutches, canes, and wheelchairs. Hospital staff should be trained and knowledgeable in how to use each of these mobility aids so that they can properly teach patients how to use them.

Decluttering Walkways

Clutter and debris can increase the risks of slips and falls by obstructing a hospital’s walkways and hallways. Unsecured medical tubing, hoses, and electrical cords or wires are examples of clutter that cause accidents in healthcare settings. Clearing the walking areas and safely disposing of used medical equipment prevents potential slips, trips, and falls. Other safety tips include adding more storage facilities, using cord organizers, and covering electrical wires that run along the floors.

Keeping Floors Dry

Water, spilled foods, and other liquids cause hospital floors to become slippery and risky for patients or visitors. Snow and ice on hospital entrances or parking lots can also increase the risks of slip and fall accidents. Pressure dryers, microfiber mops, and fans are some options for drying wet hospital floors more efficiently. Adding barriers around wet or slippery floor areas can help prevent potential accidents and injuries. Other safety tips include giving patients slip-resistant shoes, using water-absorbent mats, and promptly covering or cleaning spills.

How a Slip and Fall Lawyer Can Help You

Slips and falls in hospitals may result in fractured bones, soft tissue injuries, lacerations, or even brain injuries. If a patient or hospital visitor sustains an injury, a skilled attorney can calculate the damages and file a legal claim to help them recover fair compensation. Compensation for such injuries prevents the financial constraints that come with medical bills or lost income. An experienced slip and fall lawyer collects the accident victim’s medical records and other necessary information to accurately calculate damages in a claim.

Slip and fall attorneys also handle insurance companies by negotiating fair settlements for accident victims. The attorneys know the best strategies to counter tactics used by insurance company adjusters. An experienced lawyer has adequate knowledge and skills to navigate the legal process quickly and efficiently.

Seek Legal Help Today

Contacting an attorney after a slip and fall accident in a hospital can ease your legal claim process and aid you in obtaining fair compensation. Reporting the accident, seeking medical help, documenting the accident scene, and maintaining the records enable the attorneys to establish liability. Schedule a consultation with an experienced slip and fall lawyer today.

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