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What is duty of care?

Caregivers, medical providers and other staff within nursing homes have a fundamental obligation to their residents and patients. In the medical field, the obligation to patients is the duty of care. The duty of care is a commitment to ensuring resident safety and to prevent accidents and illness.

Negligent staff breach their duty of care.

Ensuring resident safety

There are approximately 1.2 million people in nursing homes. All patients and their loved ones deserve to trust the care providers within these homes. Duty of care is the foundation of trust and one component is the commitment to resident safety. Nursing home staff must implement measures that prevent accidents and injuries. For instance, maintaining adequate supervision and addressing potential risks as promptly as possible is part of the staff’s duties to their patients.

Caring for basic needs

Negligence includes failing to meet the basic needs of nursing home residents. The staff must provide nourishing meals and to ensure that the residents receive proper care regarding their hygiene. Residents within a nursing home deserve to exist in an environment that encourages emotional and physical well-being.

Monitoring all health concerns

Care providers should remain vigilant when it comes to resident health. They must document any changes in physical or cognitive health and promptly report all concerns. A duty of care involves collaborating with healthcare professionals to address any evolving medical needs. Typically, nursing home residents will have various health conditions that change over time.

Nursing home staff should always respect their patients’ autonomy. Nursing homes provide residents with a safe environment where they can express a sense of independence without fear of harm.

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