Monday, November 02, 2009

SunBridge Nursing home cited after man's genitals disintegrate

An Everett nursing home is facing a lawsuit after an elderly resident's genitals disintegrated while staff allegedly failed to act.

Charles Bradley, then 93, arrived at Everett Care & Rehabilitation in the winter of 2004, suffering from the usual maladies of old age, according to court documents. He continued to live at the nursing home until two weeks before his death, which came on March 31, 2008, when he was rushed to the emergency room with a life-threatening -- but previously undetected -- malady.

In court documents, attorneys for Bradley's family claim staff at the nursing home left a wound on the elderly man untreated for months. That injury, apparently the result of an undiagnosed penile cancer, purportedly contributed to his death.

By allowing Bradley's injury to fester and worsen for months, plaintiffs' attorney claimed, the nursing home and parent company SunBridge Healthcare Corp. violated a promise to care for him

According to the complaint, staff at Everett Care & Rehabilitation noticed that Bradley's skin was breaking down while changing his diaper in November 2007.

Though staff notified a care manager, that manager allegedly failed to notify Bradley's doctor. Instead, according to the allegations, the manager "left to go on vacation and 'forgot' to tell the doctor."

During the four months that followed the initial notice of the wound, Bradley's genitals essentially broke apart bit by bit, the complaint contends, while the elderly man steadily lost weight. The injury was not treated until Bradley was taken to the Providence Medical Center on March 13, 2008.

Initially diagnosing Bradley with pneumonia, doctors there found only an infected, open wound on the man's groin, according to the complaint. Doctors later determined that Bradley was afflicted with penile cancer; Bradley died two weeks later.

"There was no evidence the facility had contacted the resident's physician … to allow for timely medical intervention," the state investigators said in an investigatory report provided by DSHS. "There was no evidence the facility had contracted their social services department or the resident's family." The center was cited and forced to take corrective action.


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