Saturday, September 20, 2008

High temperatures

This past week I came across a situation that happened several months ago, in which a resident was running a high fever 102.6 he was left alone in his apartment and was not checked on all night. He experienced a fall, laid on the floor and was not found until the next morning several hours later. The caregiver who took the resident's temperature failed to intervene by not calling the facility nurse to report the high temperature, by not assisting the resident to get his Tylenol and by not checking on the resident to see that the temperature was reduced.
Orientation and training of facility policies and appropriate protocol for staff are so critical. Had the caregiver received the orientation and training that is required the outcome for this resident may have been prevented.
Also the facility managerial staff failed to do an investigation of the fall. If the investigation had been completed it would have come to light that this employee was lacking completion of the orientation.
The investigation should have included the who, what, when where, and why of the fall, the actions of the caregiver, and an evaluation of the training of the caregiver. Development of appropriate strategies to prevent the situation from happening again was also indicated.

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