Jury Finds Nursing Home Negligent in Resident’s Death

As Maryland Nursing Home Neglect Attorneys, we have been following the recent nursing home neglect case ruling against Rosewood Care Center on behalf of Catherine Taylor, a patient who died in 2004 at the age of 88 from bed sore complications during her stay at the Illinois facility.

Taylor was a resident of Rosewood Care Center, in July and August of 2004, and was taken to Provena Saint Joseph Medical Center in August for a treatment to remove bedsores and treat bone infections that developed, according to the suit, as a result of being confined to her bed without proper nursing home care. She had allegedly developed a bedsore on her backside that was the size of a fist, and died in December 2004 at the age of 88 from complications of the bedsore infection.

On Monday of this week, a jury ruled against Rosewood Care Center, and awarded the family of Catherine Taylor $51,000 in damages. The center is also responsible for covering all attorney fees over the past five years of the lawsuit.

Bedsores, also known as decubitus ulcers or pressure sores, are a major problem in nursing homes, causing injury and death to nearly one million Americans every year. When residents are left sitting or lying in the same position for long periods of time, the skin starts to break down, causing pressure sores which can lead to bone infections, or osteomyelitis—an inflammation of the bones caused by a bacteria that enters the body through the wound and attacks the bone. Once the bone becomes infected, an abscess can develop, resulting in the loss of blood supply that hinders the natural healing ability of the body.

Osteomyelitis can be treated with antibiotics, yet some cases require surgery to remove the dead tissue, bone, and fluid from the area around the bed sore with a scalpel, so the skin can heal. The mortality rate reported for residents with osteomyelitis is extremely high.

In our recent post on nursing home injury and wrongful death from decubitus ulcer complications, our attorneys discussed the best preventative treatment for bedsores—stopping them before they start. The sooner bedsores are detected, the faster they can be prevented. One small sore can quickly develop into an infection that is painful, difficult to heal, and can become a life-threatening nursing home injury.

If a nursing home fails to protect residents from developing decubitus ulcers and osteomyelitis that can result in injury or death, the nursing home could be held liable for Maryland nursing home negligence or wrongful death. Our attorneys at Lebowitz and Mzhen Personal Injury Lawyers represent victims and their families who wish to recover personal injury compensation from nursing home negligence and harm. Contact us today.

Jury Faults Nursing Home in Neglect Case, The Herald-News, December 2, 2009

Related Web Resources:

National Institutes of Health, (NIH): Medline Plus: Pressure Ulcer Research

The AGS Foundation for Health and Aging: Pressure Sores

National Institutes of Health, (NIH): Medline Plus: Osteomyelitis
NCHS Data Brief: Pressure Ulcers Among Nursing Home Residents: United States 2004

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