Wandering or Elopement

Highly Experienced Nursing Home Neglect Lawyers Serving Residents and Families Throughout Chatham County

In Savannah, nursing home neglect can have dire consequences, including the risk of wandering or elopement among residents. When facilities fail to provide adequate supervision or do not implement proper security measures, vulnerable residents may wander away from the facility, exposing themselves to various dangers. The consequences of these incidents can be severe, ranging from injuries due to accidents or environmental hazards to the emotional distress of being lost and disoriented.

In these situations, a Savannah nursing home neglect attorney at Suthers & Harper can be crucial in pursuing compensation from liable parties on behalf of the affected resident and their family. Our attorneys have extensive experience handling cases involving residents suffering injuries after wandering or eloping from a Savannah nursing home. We can investigate the circumstances surrounding the incident, gather evidence of negligence or wrongdoing on the part of the facility or staff, and advocate for the resident’s rights and interests. Contact a Savannah nursing home abuse and neglect lawyer on our team at 800.320.2384 to discuss your options and right to compensation.

A Nursing Home’s Duty to Prevent Wandering or Eloping

Savannah nursing homes have a duty to prevent residents from wandering and eloping by implementing appropriate measures to ensure their safety and well-being.

Assessment and Care Planning

Nursing homes must conduct comprehensive assessments of residents upon admission to identify those at risk of wandering or elopement due to cognitive impairments or other factors. Based on these assessments, individualized care plans should be developed to address residents’ specific needs and minimize the risk of wandering or elopement.

Supervision and Monitoring

Nursing homes are responsible for providing adequate supervision and monitoring of residents, especially those at risk of wandering or elopement. This may involve regular staff member checks, electronic monitoring systems, or other measures to ensure residents’ whereabouts are known and their movements are monitored.

Environmental Safety Measures

Savannah nursing homes must maintain secure and safe environments to prevent residents from wandering or eloping. This includes installing secure locks on doors and windows, implementing alarm systems or sensors to alert staff to potential wandering or elopement, and ensuring proper fencing and gating around outdoor areas.

Staff Training

Nursing home staff should receive training on recognizing signs of wandering or elopement risk, effectively supervising and monitoring residents, and responding appropriately in the event of a wandering or elopement incident.

These duties are based on regulations and guidelines set forth by federal and state authorities, including the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Georgia Department of Community Health. Additionally, specific requirements may vary depending on the accreditation status and licensing requirements of individual nursing homes in Savannah.

Injuries From Wandering or Eloping from a Savannah Nursing Home

The risk of injuries to nursing home residents in Savannah who wander or elope from the facility is substantial. Residents who wander or elope may encounter traffic, uneven terrain, or extreme weather conditions, increasing the risk of falls, fractures, or other traumatic injuries.

Environmental Exposure

Residents who wander or elope may become lost or disoriented, exposing them to prolonged exposure to extreme temperatures, leading to heatstroke or hypothermia.


Residents who wander or elope may inadvertently encounter dangerous objects or substances, leading to injuries such as cuts, burns, or poisoning. Residents can also get struck by motor vehicles or fall after tripping on a marked or unmarked hazard.

Vulnerability to Predators

Residents who wander or elope may become targets for criminal activity or exploitation by individuals seeking to exploit their vulnerable state.

Psychological Trauma

Residents who wander or elope may experience fear, anxiety, or confusion, leading to psychological distress and exacerbation of underlying mental health conditions.

Delayed Medical Care

Residents who wander or elope may be unable to access necessary medical care promptly, resulting in delays in treatment for existing health conditions or new injuries sustained during the wandering or elopement incident. Residents who go missing from a facility may also experience worsening medical conditions as a result of not receiving prescribed medication.

Overall, the risk of injuries to nursing home residents who wander or elope from the facility underscores the critical importance of implementing effective prevention strategies and ensuring adequate supervision and security measures to protect residents’ safety and well-being.

Who Is Liable for a Nursing Home Resident Wandering or Eloping

Under Georgia law, nursing homes could face liability if a resident wanders or elopes from the facility due to negligence. This liability arises if the nursing home neglects to implement sufficient safety measures, like ensuring proper supervision, installing secure locks, or utilizing alarms to prevent wandering or elopement. If it’s found that the nursing home violated its duty of care and this violation directly leads to the resident’s wandering or elopement, the facility may be held accountable under the law for any injuries or harm suffered by the resident.

If your loved one was living in a Savannah nursing home and wandered away from the facility due to a lack of supervision, it is important you speak with an experienced injury lawyer about your options. At Suthers & Harper, our Savannah nursing home neglect lawyers have extensive experience representing residents and families in lawsuits designed to hold negligent facilities responsible for the harm residents have suffered. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation today, call 800.320.2384. You can also reach us through our secure online contact form. Calling is free, and we will not bill you for our services unless and until we can recover compensation on your behalf.

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