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Levin & Perconti Obtains $875,000 Settlement for Family of Man Who Choked to Death at Chicago Nursing Home

On July 24th, our attorneys secured $875,000 for the family of Antonio Mares, a resident of the Center Home for Hispanic Elderly in Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood. Physician’s orders indicated that Mr. Mares was to only receive soft foods, a requirement that was violated by the facility and resulted in his death.

In November 2012, a CNA brought Mr. Mares his dinner, which consisted of a food not allowed by his diet plan, and left his room. The CNA returned to find Mr. Mares choking and unsuccessfully attempted the Heimlich maneuver. The CNA also used the call button in his room, but no members of the nursing staff responded. Mr. Mares’ death is the result of neglecting to follow a physician-ordered diet plan, as well as failing to adhere to the standard of care for those who are at risk of choking. All nursing home residents who are determined to be at risk for choking are to be closely supervised while eating.

In a statement made by Isela Mares, Mr. Mares’ daughter, she says “Our family was robbed of the opportunity to properly say goodbye to my father, and while no sum of money will ever make up for our loss, we are hopeful that this settlement will incentivize the nursing home to make some needed changes.”

Levin & Perconti: Over 25 Years of Fighting for Families Like Yours
For over 25 years, our elder law attorneys have worked tirelessly on behalf of families with loved ones who have needlessly suffered from nursing home abuse and neglect. Choking can happen all too easily and quickly to those of advanced age and with differing physical and medical conditions. Even with a documented diet plan in place and a physician’s order dictating the types of foods that should be avoided, choking incidents are occurring with more and more frequency in nursing homes. Understaffing is a chronic issue in nursing homes and when there aren’t enough employees to care for the constant needs of residents, care begins to suffer and accidents happen. A nursing home who makes a conscious decision to understaff their facility is harming patients and should be held responsible.

We are committed to making nursing homes take accountability for incidents of neglect and abuse that have hurt your loved ones. While money cannot reverse the mistakes of the past, the hope is that by forcing nursing home to accept responsibility, they just might step up to the plate and begin making large and small scale changes that will prevent further tragedies.

If you have a loved one that has suffered as a result of nursing home physical, emotional, sexual abuse or neglect, including choking, please contact our attorneys for a free consultation.

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