Elderly Woman Dies When Nurse Refused to Administer CPR

A senior living facility resident died last week after a nurse at the facility called 911 for the resident, who was having trouble breathing, but refused to perform CPR. The 87-year-old woman was in respiratory distress after she collapsed at the facility. 

When the nurse called 911, the dispatcher advised the nurse to preform CPR. The nurse responded that she would not preform CPR because the facility policy is to call for emergency services and simply wait with the patient for them to arrive.

The dispatcher insisted that someone needed to perform CPR on the patient or she would die. The dispatcher asked the nurse to have a bystander perform CPR since she was unwilling. Instead, the patient was left struggling to breath for over five minutes before help arrived. She was taken to the hospital but later died.

The facility has stood by the nurse saying that the facility policy is not to attempt CPR but rather to call for help. The patient was a resident of the independent living portion of the facility. It is important when choosing a care facility for a loved one to fully consider the person's care needs and how the choice may impact the patient. 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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