Best Practices to Mitigate Risk Factors for Elopements in Nursing Homes

We hope you find this Nursing Home Neglect Blog Article both Helpful and Informative.

The issue of elopement in nursing homes has surged into the spotlight in recent years, creating a challenge for healthcare providers and administrators alike. Defined as the unauthorized or unsupervised departure of a resident from a facility, elopement presents significant safety risks. However, there are actionable steps nursing homes can take to mitigate these risks effectively.

Conduct Comprehensive Risk Assessments

Individualized Assessment

Identify residents who are most vulnerable to elopement by conducting detailed risk assessments. These assessments should consider cognitive impairments, previous incidents of wandering or elopement, and certain psychological conditions like anxiety or depression.

Facility Assessment

Evaluate the physical layout of the nursing home. Identify any areas that may facilitate elopement, such as poorly secured doors or fences.

Implement Advanced Monitoring Systems

Video Surveillance

Install video surveillance cameras in key areas like hallways, common areas, and exits to help monitor resident activity.

Train Staff Effectively

Elopement Protocols

Ensure all staff members are aware of the facility’s protocols for preventing and responding to elopements.

Periodic Training

Offer staff periodic training programs that include techniques for calming agitated residents and methods to redirect wandering behavior.

Integrate Family and Care Partners

Regular Updates

Keep family members and other care partners informed about the resident’s care plan, including any risk of elopement.

Solicit Information

Use the valuable insight family members can provide about potential triggers or patterns of behavior that could lead to elopement.

Psychological Interventions

Safe Spaces

Create safe spaces within the facility where residents can explore freely. Controlled environments can satiate the wandering tendencies of residents without exposing them to risks.

Use of Non-Intrusive Barriers

Door Alarms

Implement door alarms that alert staff if a door is opened without authorization.

Visual Barriers

Utilize visual barriers such as colored mats or curtains in front of exits. These can serve as deterrents to wandering residents.


Elopement in nursing homes is a serious issue that requires a multifaceted approach for effective mitigation. From employing advanced monitoring technology to ensuring rigorous staff training, a combination of these best practices can substantially reduce the risk factors contributing to elopements. But remember, the first step is always identifying those most at risk; from there, an effective, tailored intervention strategy can be implemented.



Call 407.612.6464863.324.3500 today to speak with an experienced Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Lawyer who proudly serves Lakeland, Orlando, and throughout the State of Florida.

Blog categories
Main blog page Auto Accidents Bedsores - Nursing Home Birth injury Bowel Blockage - Nursing Home Catastrophic injury Elopement - Nursing Home Falls - Nursing home Hypoglycemia - Nursing Home Motorcycle accidents Nursing home neglect Plant accidents Slip and fall Trucking Accidents Warehouse injury Wrongful death
Quick email form
Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.

Sanga Turnbull

Sanga Turnbull is the founder and principal attorney at The Turnbull Law Firm, a Florida law firm helping personal injury victims in Winter Haven and Orlando recover compensation for harm done to them by the negligence of others. The comprehensive personal injury practice at The Turnbull Firm includes all manner of motor vehicle accidents, nursing home neglect and abuse, slip and fall, workplace and industrial accidents, medical malpractice, catastrophic injury, wrongful death, and more. Injury victims or their families are invited to call The Turnbull Firm for a no-cost, confidential consultation about any potential claims they may have.