Wrongful death is defined by law as death that occurs resulting from abuse or neglect. There are various types of accidents that can cause wrongful death within a nursing home facility. Deaths may result from negligence and death may also result from intentional acts. A wrongful death attorney in Nebraska or another location may be able to help you if you believe you are dealing with a wrongful death case.

Common Causes of Wrongful Death in Nursing Homes

Even though there are many different causes of wrongful death that occur in nursing home facilities, many of them are caused by:
Dehydration and malnutrition
Pressure sore complications
Medication mistakes
Aspiration pneumonia
Other causes of wrongful death that may result from negligence include:
Elopement or wandering
Fatal infections such as sepsis
Clogged breathing tubes and other mismanagement of medical devices

Dehydration & Malnutrition

Many nursing home residents need help with feeding and nutrition just as much as they need help with getting around. Since they are unable to properly care for themselves, it is up to the staff to ensure that all residents are receiving proper nutrition and hydration, so they can stay healthy and safe. But, understaffing is a common problem that occurs in many nursing home facilities. This issue can cause residents that are already frail to become dehydrated and suffer from malnutrition if staff isn’t following special diets, etc.


Falls are extremely common in nursing home facilities. Nearly half of all residents within nursing homes will suffer from a fall every year. Falls mainly occur in residents who have issues with their vision and are frail due to aging or other medical issues. With that being said, it is the nursing home’s responsibility to create an appropriate care plan for all residents to ensure that measures are put into place to prevent falls from occurring. If these plans are not created or are created and not followed, a wrongful death lawsuit may soon follow.

Mistakes With Medications

Medication errors are also common when it comes to contributing to wrongful death. Medication errors include giving the resident the incorrect dosage or the incorrect medication. Medication errors can also be made if a staff member fails to give the resident their prescribed medicine. Staff members can also make mistakes if they improperly administer a resident's medication. For example, if the instructions say the medicine should be taken whole and the staff member crushes the pill, this could be considered a mistake.

Due to understaffing, improper training, and other factors, these things could lead to medication errors.

Issues with Pressure Sores

Pressure sores are also known as pressure ulcers or bed sores and are considered injuries to the tissue of the skin. These injuries can form on bony areas on the body such as the hips, elbows, and heels. Pressure sores are easily preventable, although they can quickly advance and severely threaten a resident's health. Once the sore has become more severe, it can become infected. Infections can easily spread to areas around the bone. This can result in limb amputation, whether partial or full. This can impact a resident’s mobility thus leading to death.


Wrongful death may also be caused by choking. People over the age of 65 years of age are at a high risk of choking on food. This is typically caused by issues with swallowing. There are precautions that nursing home staff can take to prevent choking including making sure that residents are being properly monitored during meals.