Hospital Malnutrition Claim *
What is malnutrition?
Malnutrition is defined as a lack of proper nutrition which is commonly caused by not having enough to eat, not eating the correct food or be unable to eat food which is required by you. It can also be defined as a deficiencies or imbalances in a person’s intake of energy or nutrients. In general, malnutrition is divided into two categories; under nutrition and over nutrition.
This is when a person is not getting enough nutrients or energy in their diet. A common sign of this is weight loss and many people may become underweight and deficient is necessary vitamins. Under nutrition can also make people lack energy and they may have reduced mobility as a result.
This occurs when a person get more nutrients than they require. They receive more nutrients than are required for the normal growth and development of a person and also their metabolism. In some cases there may only be an oversupply of one nutrient which can lead to vitamin poisoning if left untreated.
Who is Liable?
An important part in this process is determining who is liable for this. Hospitals and medical practices have a duty of care to ensure the health and safety of their patients at all times. Breaching this duty of care can lead to illness *. If there has been a case of hospital negligence * it is often a medical practitioner or the hospital that is at fault for failing to ensure health and safety. As malnutrition does not occur instantly and develops over a period of time it can often be difficult to determine at which point there was a breach in care. However, a claim may still be made against the hospital in which you were being treated at. Determining liability is a very important step in this process as the hospital may have acted negligently in providing the required level of treatment and care to you.
Signs of Malnutrition
- Weight loss
- Lack of appetite
- Difficulty concentrating
- Loss of body tissue and muscle mass
- Longer healing time of injuries and illness
- Fatigue and lack of energy
- Muscle weakness
- Higher risk of illness
What causes Malnutrition?
Not eating enough food
One of the most common causes of hospital malnutrition is not eating enough food which provides you with the nutrients required by your body. When you are a patient in hospital it is important that you are being fed nutritious food which will contribute to the recovery of your illness which you are currently being treated for. It is important that the hospital is giving you enough food so that you are not left hungry following a meal. Failing to do so can lead to under nutrition.
Poor level of care
When you are a patient who is unwell and are being treated in a hospital, you expect to receive a high standard of care at all times, from the moment you become ill to when you have fully recovered. If the hospital is acting negligently and is failing to ensure the health and safety of their patients, it is more likely that an illness will develop or an injury will be sustained. Nurses and doctors should be checking on their patients on a regular basis and carrying out relevant tests which can help to determine what treatment is required.
Due to the busy environment of a hospital it is important that there are adequate numbers of staff for the number of patients currently being treated in hospital. Under staffing can be a big issue as patients may be left without medical attention for some time. Often hospital employees are overworked and are required to carry out a large amount of administrative work which leaves them unable to care for their patients to a high standard of care. As a result of this, many illnesses and conditions may deteriorate and in some cases vital symptoms may be missed that require urgent medical attention.
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