Bed sores are also referred to as decubitus ulcers or pressure sores. They are not just a little blister that appears and goes away with a dab of lotion. They are a disease that can affect the skin, surrounding body parts, and even your entire life if the condition worsens enough.
Normally, extended pressure or friction causes them but they have been seen to come about in different ways as well. Here are some Pennsylvania nursing home cases that deal with bed sores (similarly referred to as pressure sores or decubitus ulcers)
$150,000 NURSING HOME SETTLEMENT:
Pennsylvania nursing home bed sore case. The personal health history of the resident at the center of this lawsuit should have raised the suspicions of the staff that he was at risk.
Unfortunately, it did not. The man suffered from obesity and had bed sores in the past. Previously, they did not advance to a critical state and were taken care of in a timely and effective fashion.
However, after this development takes place, it is important for the patient’s prospective health to install and implement a rigorous bed sore prevention plan. Here, the opposite happened. He was checked and rotated but it was not regular and it did not substantially protect him from this specific threat.
As a result, he did get bed sores again and this time they were worse than the original wounds. Some of them arose in prior sites but others appeared on different spots on his body. He needed to be transferred back to the hospital and undergo another set of treatments in order to prevent further complications.
He did not experience a major infection but he did suffer a lot of pain. He sued the nursing home to recover for these events and recovered over $100,000 which is surprising because of the following points:
- The nursing home spotted the issue quickly and took corrective and successful measures;
- He did not sustain long-term repercussions; but
- The nursing home clearly lapsed in its treatment of him.
$400,000 NURSING HOME SETTLEMENT:
Pennsylvania nursing home bed sore case. This case was more complicated than it should have been primarily because of the mismanagement of the nursing home where the resident was living. Early into the plaintiff’s stay at the facility, she developed bed sores.
The nursing home did not take aggressive action in order to combat the problem and they only persisted. The sores developed into a serious state and eventually an infection took hold. It was at this point that she was moved into the care of specialists.
They were able to neutralize much of the problem but not before she slipped into extremely poor health. The sores and their complications caused other ill effects and meant that she had to stay under the constant care of doctors and undergo extensive future treatments. It cost a lot of money and taxed her body in a number of ways.
To recover for this significant change in life circumstances, she sued the nursing home. The glaring errors all but guaranteed the matter would not go to trial. The high settlement value is reflected by these points:
- Nursing homes have higher burdens of responsibility for bed sore complications once they are on notice that the resident has them; and
- The defendant could not point to pre-existing injuries or contributory negligence to soften the blows of the plaintiff’s claims.
$320,000 NURSING HOME SETTLEMENT:
Pennsylvania nursing home bed sore case. The resident in this nursing home lawsuit was relatively young and confined to a wheelchair since a very early age because of an unrelated injury. Due to the handicap, she had been in and out of different care facilities and institutions for much of her life.
However, other than these obvious limitations, she was healthy. She did not exhibit bed sores until well into her stay at the nursing home but once they took hold they became serious. Doctors needed to perform advanced procedures in order to protect her life and stem the tide of the growing problem.
Luckily, they were successful in preventing the sores from expanding to an unreasonable degree. Yet, she still required extensive follow-up care to make sure the problem did not reemerge-all of which would only come with significant expense and pain. In order to take care of these financial and personal considerations, she sued the party that she thought was responsible: the nursing home.
Her argument was that its negligent care failed to protect her from the blight of bed sores. Both parties settled privately not long after the litigation got underway. The woman had a few things over the head of the nursing home including the following:
- She was in good health and without relevant pre-existing injuries;
- She suffered long-term pain and disfigurement because of the incident; and
- She had substantial costs and fees from the case.
$500,000 NURSING HOME SETTLEMENT:
Pennsylvania nursing home bed sore case. The man that brought this case was previously involved in a serious automobile accident. That incident left him paralyzed below the waist.
To recuperate following that event, he was transferred to the local hospital and then eventually moved to a nursing home for long-term care. It was there that a lot of his troubles began and where his health declined rapidly.
Over the course of just one year, he was already showing signs of sores, malnutrition, respiratory problems, and other significant health issues.
He sued the nursing home for negligence and argued that it was culpable for the deterioration of his condition. It argued that his issues were either the fault of prior incidents- namely the auto accident- or beyond its control.
However, this defense completely side-stepped a number of its own failures. It was this reality that eventually drove settlement talks and the man’s successful recovery can most likely be chalked up to these bullet points:
- The emergence of numerous health issues during his time at the nursing home;
- The fact that his condition was stable upon arrival; and
- He had at-risk identifiers that should have put the home on notice for proper precautions.
$250,000 NURSING HOME SETTLEMENT:
Pennsylvania nursing home bed sore case. This cause of action was more for bed sore complications than it was for actual bed sores because the resident had them prior to or immediately after entering the nursing home.
Therefore, the complaint did not charge the nursing home for their emergence per se but rather for their further progression. Muscles and other parts in the local area of his body were weakened and infected.
Doctors needed to come in and attend to the problem before it got out of control. His lawsuit sought damages for the expenses, pain, and disfigurement that came with these events. Both parties decided to end the matter with an out-of-court settlement of $250,000.
PENNSYLVANIA NURSING HOME BED SORE CASE TAKEAWAYS
Despite their complicated nature, Pennsylvania nursing home lawsuits involving bed sores have some common trends. Glance at these takeaways to make sure that you understand them:
- The nursing home can be in big trouble if it did not create or follow a plan to prevent bed sores.
- Nursing homes are normally at least partially to blame if not all when their residents’ bed sores worsen or emerge on their watch.
- Nursing homes typically settle faster when they have similar lawsuits in the past.
- If bed sores lead to death through infection or other means, then the plaintiffs can file a wrongful death cause of action as well as others against the nursing home and that will typically multiply the kinds of recovery available to them.
DID YOU GET A BED SORE IN A PENNSYLVANIA NURSING HOME?
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