John Hicks and Sam Bennett successfully represented a long term care facility in a wrongful death case.
The plaintiffs were the surviving daughters of a resident who was admitted to defendant’s facility with a diagnosis of end stage Lewy Body Dementia. The plaintiffs claimed their mother developed a pressure ulcer six months prior to her death that progressed from a stage 2 to stage 4 and ultimately killed her.
The defendants argued that plaintiffs’ mother was a resident in their facility for three years and that during that time they identified and treated multiple wounds. The final wound was also being properly treated but she ultimately died due to her other comorbidities.
One of the major issues at trial was the type of mattress the resident was on at the time her final pressure ulcer worsened. Defendants presented evidence that all residents are placed on pressure reduction mattresses but that plaintiff’s mother was upgraded to an even higher level mattress in 2015. Plaintiff claimed that this mattress was not in place until December 1, 2017 and that by that time it was too late.
Defendants experts, Bruce Robinson, MD and Lisa Gildred, RN,testified that either mattress would have been appropriate in 2017 and that the wound was being properly treated. Defendants experts also testified that plaintiffs mother lived a long full life and survived longer than her doctors were prediction in January 2015.
On December 9, 2021 the jury deliberated for approximately three hours and returned a unanimous verdict in favor of the defense.
Plaintiff requested a total of $900,000 in non-economic damages.