Often, nursing home residents are elderly and sick, which is why many families bring their family members to a nursing home in the first place. Thus, a family member’s death in a nursing home may not always be cause for alarm. However, the fact that a family member was sick or elderly before their death does not absolve the nursing home of all responsibility.
The purpose of a wrongful death claim is to compensate family members for the loss of their family member’s life due to the wrongful act of another person. Originally, under Maryland law, a person’s dependents were not entitled to bring a wrongful death claim. However, in 1852, Maryland enacted the Wrongful Death Act. In Maryland, a wrongful death claim can be made “against a person whose wrongful act causes the death of another.” Normally, the claim must be made within three years of the family member’s death.
Claim Against Nursing Home for Failure to Resuscitate
One family recently brought a lawsuit against a nursing home after a mother died in the nursing home’s care, according to one news source. The family alleges that the nursing home’s staff failed to attempt to revive their mother after she was found “lifeless.”
The 52-year-old woman had been admitted to the nursing home to recover after fighting pneumonia, and she had diabetes and renal failure. Her family members decided to put her in the nursing home to help her recover—a decision they now regret. According to the allegations, the family reviewed video from their mother’s room at the time of her death. They claim that the video shows that after their mother became unresponsive, three staff members came in her room and took her vitals but failed to provide any medical attention. No one performed CPR, no one called a code blue, and no one called 911 until after about 30 minutes. The complaint also alleges that an employee called emergency dispatch about 10 minutes later and reported that the mother’s chart was misread. According to the allegations, the woman’s chart indicated that she wished to be resuscitated, but the staff read her chart incorrectly. When a patient is admitted to the home, the patient indicates whether they wish to be resuscitated by checking a box.
Since the woman’s death, the state’s Department of Public Health investigated the woman’s death and declared that any patient who does not wish to be resuscitated must wear a pink bracelet. The nursing home contends the staff members did nothing wrong. The home stated that its staff is highly trained and delivers care of the utmost quality.
Do You Have a Claim Against a Nursing Home?
If you lost a loved one and believe you have a claim against a nursing home, you may be entitled to compensation for your loss. At Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC, our attorneys have decades of experience representing victims throughout Maryland and Washington, D.C. We approach each case with empathy and professionalism. Our compassionate team of professionals is here to help answer your questions and guide you through the legal process. To set up a free consultation, call us at 1-800-654-1949 or 410-654-3600 or contact us online.
More Blog Posts:
The Presence of Hidden Cameras in Nursing Homes Is Resulting in Increased Transparency, Maryland Nursing Home Lawyer Blog, published June 28, 2017.
Appellate Court Upholds Nursing Home Arbitration Clause Despite Flaws in the Contractual Language, Maryland Nursing Home Lawyer Blog, published June 7, 2017.