Resident Dies from Diabetic Coma; Southside Virginia Nursing Home Settles

Nursing home resident was an 87-year-old diabetic who was receiving twice-daily medication for persistent hyperglycemia. One evening at the nursing home, he became suddenly and severely hypoglycemic. A nurse at the facility attempted to stabilize improperly the decedent’s blood sugar level, but did not notify the on-call physician or have the decedent transported to a nearby hospital for emergency assistance. Six hours later, the decedent died at the nursing home, reportedly as a result of a heart attack. The state agency that monitored regulatory compliance by nursing homes investigated and concluded the care provided to the decedent was “without deficiency.” At the time of the resident’s death, the decedent was recovering from recent pneumonia, had lung cancer, and required assistance with all activities of daily living. The decedent’s only statutory beneficiary was his 88-year-old sister, who asserted claims against the nursing home for failing to monitor and correct the resident’s plummeting blood sugar level. The case settled for mid six figures.

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