Saturday, September 08, 2012

Disparate Nursing Home Care

The Chicago Police Department said it appeared to be a suicide. The Cook County Office of the Medical Examiner said it was an accident. But when 84-year-old Bennie Saxon fell four stories to his death May 4 at a predominantly black South Side nursing home, a lawyer retained by his family said it could be nursing home neglect.
An investigation by The Chicago Reporter found that the facility has the worst rating a nursing home can get–"three times the number of lawsuits of half of Chicago nursing homes–"and that residents get less than half the time each day with staff than residents at a predominantly white facility in Evanston operated by the same owner.
  Saxon, who had dementia, had been living at Alden Wentworth Rehabilitation and Health Care Center at 201 W. 69th Street in Greater Grand Crossing for about four weeks before his fatal fall, family members said. His family has retained an attorney to investigate whether Saxon received adequate care. "The law requires that [homes] take danger and fall precautions into account for people who are at risk for falling," the attorney said.

Murphy is awaiting autopsy reports and said a lawsuit could be filed within weeks. If so, it will be the 14th in Cook County court filed against the nursing home between 2004 and 2009, according to Cook County records obtained by the Reporter. That's more than three times the lawsuits than half of the city's 91 nursing homes; the median is four lawsuits.

At least one of those cases has been settled. In 2006, Alden Wentworth paid $600,000 related to the November 2000 death of Bernetta Hall, a disabled 46-year-old woman.
Disparate Nursing Home Care | The Chicago Reporter

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Verdict in Abuse Trial

A Des Moines County jury awarded $600,000 in wrongful death damages Thursday to the estate of a Yarmouth man who died while living at the Danville Care Center nursing facility in 2009.
The decision of the five-woman, three-man jury was far below the $15 million attorneys representing the estate of Gene Bozarth requested during closing arguments Wednesday in Des Moines County District Court.
Nursing home neglect Attorneys representing the Bozarths and Health Care of Iowa, owners of the Danville Care Center, could not be reached for comment late Thursday afternoon. Jurors left the courthouse about 4 p.m. after seven hours of deliberations without commenting on the verdict.
Court officials said the request for $15 million in damages is the largest single request in more than 25 years in a civil trial in Des Moines County District Court. 
Jurors continue deliberations