Last week The Daily Republic explained a jury verdict in a nursing home lawsuit that found a local care facility guilty in causing the death of one of its residents, Helen L. Bumgardner. Two sons were awarded $500,000 by the jury following the careless and negligent behavior by an employee at Firesteel Healthcare Center.
Ms. Bumgardner was receiving care the facility several years ago when a certified nursing assistant attempted to transfer her off the toilet in the middle of the night. The negligent nursing home employee tried to make the effort without any help-contrary to clear policy. While attempting to make the move, Helen fell and hit her head on the bathroom floor.
It wasn’t until six hours later that she was eventually transferred to a nearby hospital where it was discovered she had fractured both her humerus and hip. As a result of the fall, Helen also suffered a hematoma which is essentially bleeding around the brain. Helen eventually passed away, and the doctors ruled that her death was caused by complications from her hip and shoulder injuries.
Initially the nursing assistant denied her role in the fall, because she did not want to get into personal trouble. She first concocted a story about the resident falling out of bed on her own and hitting her head. It was only when pressed for the truth that she revealed was actually happened. A co-worker also admitted that the negligent nursing assistant had consumed three caffeine pills that night and appeared very hyper, using over-exaggerated motions.
This type of deadly negligence occurs all the time at nursing homes. Our Chicago nursing home lawyers at Levin & Perconti have seen case after case of staff members who attempt to make dangerous physical moves of residents without help. The problem is then made worse by the employee’s lying about the incident. The difficulty in rooting out the truth in these situations is exactly why it is important to contact a nursing home attorney any time you suspect a loved one has suffered harm at a facility that may have been prevented.