Fall risk patients and no rail at the nursing home?

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My mom left the hospital for a short stay at the nursing home for rehab. She is a fall risk and the nursing home said they cannot provide a bed with rails. They put the bed down and got mattresses so if she falls, she'll land safely. If she falls face down she probably will suffocate and not be able get herself turned over.

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There is considerable evidence that bed rails contribute to at least as many injuries as they prevent. Patients struggle to get over them and lose their balance, for example. The rehab place has done the standard things to minimize injury from a fall out of bed.
If you are truly concerned about her suffocating then ask for an alarm too.
Bed rails are considered a restraint. And like jeannebibbs said, elderly people have tried to climb over them.
Mother had bedrails at Rehab, she wasn't allowed to have them up during the night. If she needed to get up, she was supposed to ring for help. Also she had a pad under her that went off if she DID get up.

She wanted bedrails at home, we bought and installed them and the first night they were in place she slid between the rails and the bed. They were gone the next day.

Endofgrand, my Mom was also a major fall risk but she was determine to climb out of bed and walk [she could no longer stand]. Our State law prohibitive skilled nursing facilities to have bed rails on the bed.

Mom's bed was lowered, and rubber fall mats were placed on the floor around the bed. Mom still was climbing out and getting scratched up from the mechanics of the bed. Eventually pillows kept Mom in place, the pillows were stuffed around under the mattress to make like a cocoon that Mom couldn't climb out.... but it also wouldn't allow Mom to turn over on her own.

It's dependent on state laws where you live, combined with facility policy. In my state, rehab facilities are not allowed to use restraints (bedrails are one type of restraint). Nursing homes here are allowed to use restraints.
Ask if they have concave mattresses. This is where the mattress curves and sides are higher than the middle making it hard for them to get out. Hospital beds can now go almost to the floor. The side mats are like gym matts, firm. State laws prohibit any restraints. In NJ they are allowed to put one side up.
Dad was caught just in time climbing over the rails.
He said he was dreaming that he was climbing over the fence.

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