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Settlement reached in wrongful death suit against nursing home

The elderly members of our society are especially vulnerable to accidents, illness and even abuse by the people who are supposed to be their caretakers. Many elderly people are unable to care for themselves on their own anymore, and they should be treated with dignity and respect in their final days. When a family makes the difficult decision of placing a loved one in a nursing home, they should have the peace of mind knowing that the residence where their relative is staying will keep him or her safe and comfortable.

Sadly, there have been cases in Georgia as well as the rest of the country in which a nursing home failed to provide an adequate level of care, and resulted in the injury or death of an elderly resident. One family recently settled a wrongful death lawsuit against a West Virginia nursing home. The terms of the settlement were not publicly disclosed. According to the lawsuit, a resident had lived at Heartland of Martinsburg for four years before she died in 2011, after suffering pressure sores and infections and even falling while in the nursing home’s care.

The same nursing home lost a $90 million lawsuit in 2011, when a woman in its care passed away from dehydration complications. Although people know the death of an elderly family member is inevitable, it’s tragic when their loved one suffers and passes away from conditions that could have been prevented. Such lawsuits can motivate nursing homes and caregivers to keep the same thing from happening in the future.

Source: The West Virginia Record, “Nursing home settles wrongful death suit against it,” John O’Brien, July 10, 2013

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