A former nursing home patient’s family has reportedly settled a bedsore lawsuit that was filed against an Evergreen Park skilled nursing facility following her death. The 77-year-old stroke victim purportedly resided at the Evergreen Health Care Center for four months during the first half of 2007. When the woman died, she was allegedly immobile and covered in bedsores. The woman also reportedly suffered from dehydration, sepsis, and pneumonia at the time of her death.
According to the nursing home resident’s granddaughter, her bedsores resulted from neglect on the part of the care facility. In her lawsuit, the woman’s granddaughter accused the Evergreen Health Care Center of failing to prevent, treat, or monitor the stroke victim’s bedsores. She also claims such failures contributed to her grandmother’s death. The woman’s family claims that she was likely never turned, they often found her soiled, and on at least one occasion her feeding tube was dislodged. In addition, the stroke victim’s granddaughter stated that facility employees failed to discover or treat any of her bedsores.
25 lawsuits were reportedly filed against the Evergreen Health Care Center between 2001 and 2012. The for-profit nursing home also nearly lost its state license in 2010 after Illinois officials purportedly cited the facility for resident falls and other injuries, medication errors, and severe patient neglect. The nursing home was later allegedly placed on a nursing home watch list after at least 15 complaints were filed regarding the quality of care provided to residents during a two-year-period.
Although ownership did not change, the Evergreen Park facility was reportedly placed under new management in 2011. According to Evergreen Health Care Center spokesperson Liana Allison, the facility has since increased the number of registered nurses employed by the nursing home, provided more than 5,000 hours of staff training and development, and earned the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Facilities Gold Seal of Approval. Allison also said that the facility has not received a single substantiated complaint regarding resident care in more than one year.
All nursing homes in Illinois must be licensed by the state and are subject to Illinois regulations. In addition, Illinois nursing homes that receive funds from the federal Medicaid and Medicare insurance programs are considered certified facilities. Certified facilities are governed by both state and federal laws. Although the Illinois Nursing Home Care Act does not require nursing homes to be certified, most skilled nursing facilities located throughout Illinois are in fact certified.
Federal regulations require skilled nursing facilities to ensure that all residents maintain the same level of health that was enjoyed upon entering the facility. If a resident’s condition worsens, the facility must work to restore the resident to his or her original condition. A common sign of nursing home neglect in Illinois and throughout the country is the presence of bedsores on a patient who has mobility issues. Bedsores are pressure ulcers that are generally caused by remaining in the same position for too long. With proper care, no skilled facility resident should suffer from bedsores.
If you believe your elderly or disabled family member has developed bedsores or shown other signs of nursing home neglect or abuse, you should contact the hardworking lawyers at Abels & Annes, P.C. today. Our experienced Chicago Metro nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys are available 24 hours per day, every day of the week to help you protect the rights of your loved ones. For a free consultation with a knowledgeable advocate, please give Abels & Annes, P.C. a call at (312) 475-9596.
Note: Abels & Annes, P.C. did not represent the victim’s family in the above mentioned lawsuit, however we do handle bedsore cases against nursing homes on an ongoing basis.
Seniors in Illinois and Nationwide May Receive Inadequate Care from Private Medical Providers, Illinois Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Blog, January 20, 2013
Recent Study Suggests For-Profit Nursing Homes in Illinois and Nationwide are More Likely to Overcharge Medicare While Neglecting Seniors, Illinois Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Blog, January 16, 2013
Family Settles Bed Sore Lawsuit Against Troubled Nursing Home, by Lorraine Swanson, Evergreen Park Patch