Nursing Home Accused of Death of Resident Who Developed Severe Bedsore
In Redding v. Parklands Facility, Inc., 2022-CA-000311, a grieving family alleged that their loved one lost her life due to a severe infection caused by an untreated bedsore. The decedent was 72 at the time of her death in April of 2021. The family filed a lawsuit against the facility that cared for her and won a $2.3 million judgment handed down by jurors who heard the case. According to the lawsuit, the patient developed a severe, deep pressure ulcer (commonly called a bedsore) while staying at the Parklands Care Center in Gainesville, Florida. The plaintiffs alleged that their loved one died due to complications related to the bedsore, namely, an infection that had set in. They claim that the bedsore was caused by inadequate care from the facility.
According to the lawsuit, a doctor examined the decedent on December 16, 2020. At the time, the doctor noted no signs of a bedsore. Two weeks later on December 30, 2020, the doctor noted a stage-4 pressure ulcer had formed on the decedent. Stage 4 is considered the worst pressure ulcer stage that a patient can develop. Attorneys for the plaintiff noted that the decedent was positioned on an inflatable mattress meant to prevent pressure ulcers from developing. However, the mattress was underinflated at the time that the pressure ulcer developed.
The plaintiffs also contended that at the time the decedent developed her pressure ulcer, the facility that was providing care was understaffed. Nurses were not adequately able to respond to the bedsore as it developed and it wasn’t treated in time to prevent it from developing into a stage-4 pressure ulcer. This, they argued, was due to inadequate staffing and inadequate quality of care.
Bedsores in the context of nursing homes
Bedsores are a common problem in nursing homes. However, nursing staff should be on notice that there is a risk of their patients developing bedsores and treat the bedsores before they become seriously infected. In cases where this doesn’t happen, the bedsore can represent a threat to the resident’s life.
Any prolonged exposure of the skin can disrupt blood flow to that area of the skin. This can result in the skin being starved of critical nutrients and oxygen. As a result, a bedsore can develop. Medical professionals distinguish between various stages of bedsores. These include:
- Stage-1 pressure ulcer – Considered the mildest form of a pressure ulcer. Usually, it only affects the top layer of skin.
- Stage-2 pressure ulcer – Some of the lower layers of the skin are affected and the skin may appear broken or blistered.
- Stage-3 pressure ulcer – The ulcer has advanced through all the layers of skin and is now affecting the fatty tissues underneath.
- Stage-4 pressure ulcer – The ulcer has advanced through the fatty layers and is now infecting muscle and ligaments. This is the most serious stage of pressure ulcer and can result in a serious infection developing that places the patient’s life at risk.
Talk to a Tampa, FL Nursing Home Negligence Attorney Today
The Tampa, FL nursing home negligence attorneys at Florin Gray Bouzas Owens, LLC represent the interests of injured patients and grieving families who have suffered bedsores in the context of a nursing home. Call today to schedule a free consultation and learn more about how we can help.