Monday, March 07, 2011

Georgia Jury orders health care facilities to pay $9 million in wrongful death

A Walker County jury found Country Crossing Assisted Living, its owner Travis Thompson and Hutcheson Home Heath Care liable in the death of Charlotte Pauline Dean.

Dean died on Jan. 19, 2006 after she was taken to the Hutcheson Medical Center – also known as Hutcheson Home Health. Dean, who had cerebral palsy, had multiple infected pressure ulcers on different parts of her body, her attorney said.

Hutcheson Home Health Care was providing weekly medical treatment, and Country Crossing Assisted Living was hired for around-the-clock care for Dean, her attorney said.

Dean’s family filed a wrongful death suit against the health care facilities, saying they only were treating her for one pressure ulcer, her attorney said.

“I’m very proud of the jury,” Ken Bruce, an attorney with Bruce and Thompson, told the AJC. Bruce was one of four attorneys representing Dean’s family and her estate.

“When you see a verdict like this, by definition it reflects a jury’s belief that there was some very bad treatment and bad conduct by the defendants,” he said.

The verdict came Saturday after a week-long trial in Walker State Court in Lafayette, in northwest Georgia.

The jury awarded $4 million to Dean’s family for pain and suffering and $5.5 million for the wrongful death claim.

The jury also awarded $2,683 in funeral expenses.
Jury orders health care facilities to pay $9 million in wrongful death suit  |

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