In Louisiana, as in other states, health care facilities are obligated to follow federal laws to prevent and treat bedsores, also known as pressure ulcers, of patients. Failure of a facility to provide basic care to treat a current bedsore or to prevent a new one from developing can be debilitating to a patient’s health. If a facility fails to treat or prevent new bedsores from occurring, it could be considered hospital negligence. Recently, in a nearby state, a lawsuit was filed against a transitional health care facility, claiming the death of a patient was due to the patient developing bedsores in its facility.
The claim states that the patient had a fall that resulted in surgery at a different hospital. After surgery, the patient continued to need assistance with daily activities and was transferred to the transitional facility in question. The lawsuit alleges that the facility ignored the patient’s needs and neglected to adequately staff the facility. The staff is even accused of eating the patient’s food instead of feeding her. The lawsuit also claims that despite knowing the patient was at risk for pressure ulcers the facility did not provide pressure ulcer reducing methods.
According to the family, the patient began losing weight and having periods of abnormal behavior while in the transitional facility. After the family raised concerns of the patient’s state of health to the facility, the family was informed that the patient had developed a pressure ulcer the size of an orange. Some breathing problems resulted in the transfer of the patient to a nearby hospital where she was diagnosed with a urinary tract infection, dehydration and malnutrition. Despite receiving treatment at the new hospital, the patient sadly died there just two days after the transfer.
The facility currently has not responded to the lawsuit, and damages sought by the plaintiff are unknown. Dealing with the emotional and financial stress in the aftermath of hospital negligence can be overwhelming. If you have suffered or lost a loved one to hospital negligence, speaking with an experienced attorney in Louisiana can help determine if you have a medical malpractice claim.
Source: sanluisobispo.com, “Atascadero convalescent hospital sued after woman’s death“, Matt Fountain, Oct. 24, 2016