Everything listed under: assisted living neglect

  • Nursing Home Settles Due To Patient's Pressure Ulcer Deterioration

    A 79 year old male patient was admitted to a nursing home. At the time of his admission, he was totally dependent on the nursing home’s staff for all activities of daily living. The patient did not have any pressure ulcers when he was admitted. 

    pressure ulcer

    Nursing home staff permitted the patient to develop a pressure ulcer on his sacrum and permitted the pressure ulcer to deteriorate. Nursing home staff was ordered to provide the patient with a pressure-relieving mattress. The nursing home failed to provide the patient with the pressure-relieving mattress for over one month.

    The nursing home also did not obtain wound vac therapy for the patient until yet another month had passed. Even then, the patient’s wound vac therapy stopped prematurely because the nursing home lacked proper supplies. In the interim, the nursing home permitted the patient to develop a pressure ulcer on his left inner heel.

    The patient’s sacral pressure ulcer deteriorated further and was documented to have dimensions of 7.2 cm x 4. 9 cm x 2 cm, undermining of 3.4 cm, and infection. The patient’s family requested the nursing home to have the patient evaluated at the wound clinic. The nursing home staff agreed, but did not thereafter have him evaluated at a wound clinic.

    The patient’s family removed him from the nursing home and brought him home, where he continued to receive care until his death. The patient’s family hired us to pursue claims against the nursing home for failing to prevent and treat the pressure ulcers and infection. We were able to obtain a substantial settlement for the family, which the nursing home demanded be kept confidential.

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    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.


  • Fall Results in Largest Verdict Against Nursing Home in Virginia History

    TimelineVirginia Crouse, 84 years old, was admitted to Stanleytown Health Care Center in January 2009. On admission, she was known by the defendants to be a high fall risk due to a prior stroke, dementia, weakness, poor safety awareness, balance issues, the need for extensive assistance during transfers, prior hip fracture with surgery, impaired memory loss, and disorientation, among other medical conditions and limitations.

    Hip Fracture

    Within two weeks of her admission to the facility, the patient sustained a left hip fracture and a left shoulder fracture when she was permitted to fall while using the bathroom at night. The nursing home’s staff did not hear the patient’s attempt to get outof bed because the facility had not provided her with a bed alarm. The fracture to the left hip required surgical fixation and the patient required significant pain medication following the fall.

    MFA Virginia NetworkA lawsuit was filed against Medical Facilities of America, Inc. and Stanleytown Health & Rehabilitation Center. Medical Facilities of America owns 40 facilities throughout Virginia and North Carolina and its corporate headquarters are located in nearby Roanoke, Virginia. [map will be included as exhibit]

    On the patient’s behalf, we claimed the facility failed to protect the patient from falls by failing to follow its own care plan that required nursing home staff to assist Crouse with toileting, check frequently on her safety, provide her with a bed alarm when she was in bed, and provide her with a chair alarm when she was in a chair. We also proved at trial that in the years before the patient’s fall, the defendants trained and instructed their staff NOT to use bed alarms with patients who needed them because they created too much work for nursing home staff. The defendants’ self-serving policies prompted the jury to punish the defendants with a punitive damages award of $5,000,000.

    Left FractureIn addition to the large punitive damages award, the jury awarded the patient $1,500,000 in compensatory damages. The patient incurred $72,998 in injury-related medical bills.

    After a four-day jury trial, the nursing home filed post-trial motions, all of which were denied by the judge.

    Our office attributes the jury verdict to the wonderful family we represented, a great trial judge, and a great jury that understood the many complex and important issues presented at trial. To read the opinion, CLICK HERE

     


    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.
    Timeline Left Hip Fracture MFA Network Left Shoulder Fracture
  • Nursing Home Patient Breaks Neck and Dies Following Fall from Lift; Nursing Home Settles

    A stroke-compromised, immobile nursing home patient was being transferred using a mechanical lift when staff permitted the patient to fall to the floor. Only one aide was present during the attempted transfer despite the fact that two staff members were required to be present at all times during mechanical lift transfers. In addition, discovery revealed that the nursing home was aware, years before the fall, that the lift was defective.

    Cervical Spine FractureThe nursing home did not obtain a CT scan of the patient’s neck until almost three weeks after the fall, during which time the patient’s head was observed to be positioned “downward and resting on her chest,” the patient became increasingly lethargic and her appetite decreased. The patient could not follow commands and her grip also became weak. The CT scan revealed a neck fracture at C2 with extensive swelling within the spinal canal from C1-C4 with spinal cord compression.

    Once the neck fracture and spinal cord compression were diagnosed, the patient was hospitalized. However, because the neck fracture and spinal cord injury had not been timely identified, the patient’s physicians concluded surgery would be of no benefit. The patient began receiving hospice and palliative care, became less responsive, refused medication, and ultimately refused meals. The patient died three and one-half months after the fall. The patient’s family sued the nursing home for its failure to take proper fall prevention measures. The nursing home settled the case for a confidential amount.

  • Roanoke Nursing Home Patient Develops Pressure Sore Requiring Amputation; Facility Settles

    A Roanoke nursing home permitted its elderly female patient to develop pressure ulcers (bed sore, pressure sore, decubitus ulcer) on her right heel and right foot. When the pressure ulcers (bed sore, pressure sore, decubitus ulcer) were first documented, they were described to involve eschar (dead tissue). The pressure ulcers (bed sore, pressure sore, decubitus ulcer) were thereafter permitted to deteriorate because the facility failed to take timely pressure ulcer prevention measures. Within two months of the date on which the pressure ulcers (bed sore, pressure sore, decubitus ulcer) were first noted, the patient required a below-the-knee amputation of the right leg. The nursing home also permitted the patient to develop pressure ulcers (bed sore, pressure sore, decubitus ulcer) on her lower back and hips. The patient’s family sued the nursing home for failing to take timely and proper pressure ulcer prevention measures. The nursing home settled the case for a confidential amount in the mid-six figures.

 

PLEASE NOTE: THE RESULTS OBTAINED IN SPECIFIC CASES DEPEND ON A VARIETY OF FACTORS UNIQUE TO EACH CASE.  PAST CASE RESULTS DO NOT GUARANTEE OR PREDICT A SIMILAR RESULT IN FUTURE CASES.  THE RESULTS DESCRIBED IN THIS WEBSITE ARE FROM VIRGINIA CASES HANDLED DIRECTLY BY OUR OFFICE.