Earlier today, a Silver Alert was issued by the North Carolina Center for Missing Persons after it was reported that an elderly Fayetteville man went missing from his home. The alert was issued because the man might be at risk of endangering himself or others due to a cognitive impairment.
Although the man is not a nursing home patient, this incident is still very concerning because it is a reminder of just how vulnerable dementia patients and other disabled adults really are when they are not properly monitored by nursing home staff. Nursing home negligence could result in patients getting lost outside of a facility and losing track of their whereabouts. In some cases, patients could suffer fatal injuries if they go missing for too long.
The Silver Alert system has been used for several years now in North Carolina and is designed to help find vulnerable adults in a quicker manner when they go missing or wander away from a nursing home. Families, caregivers and nursing homes all have authority to report when an adult who suffers from dementia, Alzheimer’s or other cognitive impairments goes missing.
According to reports, Fayetteville police have been searching for the missing 74-year-old man since 4 a.m. The man is described to be 5 feet 11 inches tall. He weighs about 180 pounds. Police said he might be driving a beige-colored Lexus.
Families trust that nursing homes will provide adequate security to prevent patients from escaping or wandering away from their facilities. Nursing home workers are also responsible for keeping track of residents’ whereabouts in order to make sure they do not harm each other or themselves. When patients do go missing as a result of inadequate security at a nursing home or lack of monitoring by staff, families may want to consider working with an attorney in order to learn more about protecting the rights of victims of nursing home negligence.
Source: WRAL.com, “Silver Alert issued for 74-year-old Fayetteville man,” Sept. 19, 2012
- Our firm represents patients and their families who have been harmed by nursing home negligence matters. To learn more about our firm and practice, please visit our Fayetteville nursing home negligence page.