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$300,000 awarded to family of nursing negligence victim

Illinois readers may already be aware that bedsores are a serious issue for people who are bedridden, such as the elderly -- especially after an injury. Mobility is important to prevent bed sores (also called pressure sores). If a patient is unable to move on his or her own, the nursing staff is often tasked with ensuring he or she is repositioned and rolled in order to prevent injury. When a patient develops bed sores due to nursing negligence, a medical malpractice claim may be in order.

The family of an 86-year-old woman believed that the nursing staff at an acute care facility failed to provide her with the appropriate standard of care. As a result, she developed a severe, Stage 4 pressure sore on her coccyx. When she arrived at the facility, she had already suffered injuries to her buttocks, perineal area and groin at a nursing home.

The Alabama medical facility claimed that the woman's care was within acceptable standards. It went on to say that the sore developed due to the woman's age, not a lack of care. At trial, the hospital produced expert witnesses to verify the hospital's assertions that they were not responsible for the woman's wound. However, the jury did not agree and awarded the family $300,000 in damages.

Elderly Illinois residents who develop serious pressure sores while in the care of medical staff may be entitled to restitution, depending on the circumstances. Nursing negligence should not be tolerated, and filing a medical malpractice claim might prevent another patient from being neglected in such a manner. If it is proved that the care received was substandard, monetary damages might be awarded to the victim, or the victim's family if death was the result of the substandard care.

Source: al.com, "Jury awards $300,000 to family of 86-year-old woman who developed severe bedsores in Montgomery hospital", Erin Edgemon, Nov. 25, 2015

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