Photographic evidence has become one of the most important aspects to a solid nursing home negligence case. Pressure ulcer or bedsore cases have swiftly begun to dominate the legal landscape with regard to nursing negligence claims. Litigation surrounding these injuries crosses the entire spectrum of settings where nurses practice. Namely, bedsores are found in hospital claims, nursing home litigation, assisted living claims and often times are being found for claims, which involve visiting nurses at the injured party’s own residence. Liability issues related to the screening of a case include the failure to identify the patient as being at risk for a pressure ulcer, failure to report signs of deterioration of an ulcer and, at times, the failure to question or challenge the propriety of a physician’s orders. Both Plaintiff and defense attorneys should work diligently to obtain all photographic evidence of skin breakdown for bedsore cases.
You can read more practice tips in my chapter Screening the Nursing Malpractice Case, in a text edited by Patricia Iyer, RN MSN LNCC. More information about Nursing Malpractice, Third Edition, 2007 may be found at here.