Patients who are on a ventilator are often in poor condition. While there are some patients who are on specialized ventilators that they can wear home and other places, this isn’t always the case.
For any patient who is on a ventilator, staying as healthy as possible is imperative. All of these patients run the risk of developing ventilator-associated pneumonia. This is a dangerous condition because it is a serious infection in already weakened lungs.
One troubling thing to think about here is that many patients who are on ventilators, such as those who are intensive care, might not be able to speak up about what is going on with them. This leaves the burden of determining if there is something going on up to the medical professionals who are treating them.
An infection in the lungs can occur if bacteria somehow gets in the tube. One way to prevent this from occurring is to practice proper cleaning of the insertion area and sleeping with the head of the bed raised. Patients might not be able to do this on their own, so they count on their caregivers to handle these duties.
When a patient does come down with ventilator associated pneumonia, they will likely need intensive treatment started as soon as possible. In most cases, removing the ventilator isn’t possible, so doctors have to figure out how to balance the need for the breathing assistance with the need to treat the infection.
If you or a loved one suffered from this type of pneumonia because of improper care by the medical staff, seeking compensation might be in order.
Source: United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Ventilator-associated Pneumonia (VAP),” accessed Sep. 29, 2017