An Iowa nursing home now faces a $10,000 fine imposed by the state following an investigation into the death of an elderly patient at the facility. As we recently discussed, Corine Armentrout and another elderly patient were injured in a November 9th auto accident when the nursing home van in which they were passengers stopped abruptly. The sudden stop resulted in the women getting thrown from their wheelchairs to the floor of the van.
The state investigation determined that women’s injuries— and subsequent death of Ms. Armentrout were attributable to the fact that the driver of the van failed to secure the women into their wheelchairs.
As a nursing home lawyer, I am glad to see that the investigators into this incident made the connection between the van accident and Ms. Armentrout’s death. Too often we see nursing home surveyors failing to make the connection between an incident and an subsequent death or injury.
Though not obvious from the news report, it certainly seems as though the individuals responsible for investigating this incident did their homework and met with the physicians and— perhaps the medical examiner who cared for Ms. Armentrout. Should Ms. Armentrout’s family choose to pursue a lawsuit against the facility, these causation opinions will be helpful in proving their case.
Related Nursing Homes Abuse Blog Entries: