Assisted Living Center Cited for Failing to Provide Timely Treatment to Resident who was Assaulted

An assisted-living center has been cited for neglect in the case of an elderly resident who died of head injuries after another resident attacked him and he was not given medical treatment for a day and a half. The victim suffered multiple skull fractures, brain hemorrhaging and three broken ribs, according to a report released Wednesday by the State Department of Health. The man died less than three weeks later.

According to the report, an employee responded to shouts early one morning, and found one resident kicking another and yelling, "That's what he gets for trying to steal from me."  The victim showed attendants a head bruise "about the size of a fried egg" and a sore about the size of a baseball on his back, where he had been kicked. He was not seen by a licensed nurse until almost seven hours later, the report said. The nurse noted in her report that she found the head injury "not tender to the touch" and noticed "bruising ... on rib cage." No medical treatment was given at that time.

The following day, another resident reported that the victim stood up from a chair and fell as his legs gave out. Three staff members came to his aid but the resident was not taken to a hospital emergency room until late that night.Hospital staff detected multiple skull fractures, cranial bleeding and broken ribs. He was admitted to intensive care for four days, and died in hospice care shortly after. Autopsy results found traumatic brain injury to be the cause of death.

The Health Department concluded that the resident failed to receive "timely medical intervention," leaving him with a "head injury, back pain and ... significant mental and mobility status changes." For more, read the story.

Robert W. Carter, Jr. is a Virginia attorney whose law practice is dedicated to protecting the rights of the victims of nursing home and assisted living neglect and abuse in Richmond, Roanoke, Norfolk, Lynchburg, Danville,Charlottesville, and across Virginia.

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