In the Courts: Short-Stay Patient Dies after Orders Not Carried Out

September 27, 2013 | Aging Services Risk, Quality, & Safety Guidance

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A jury has decided in favor of the estate of a short-stay nursing home patient who died after orders to bring her to the emergency department (ED) were not carried out, according to reports. A jury originally awarded $5.2 million for pain and suffering and for negligence, but a judge subsequently reduced the jury award to $1 million. The court had previously ruled that punitive damages would not be allowed in this case.

The patient was admitted for 30 days of poststroke rehabilitation care, after which she was expected to return home. She had recently been treated at a hospital for an abdominal abscess. A few days after her admission, she began complaining of abdominal pain. Staff allegedly failed to assess...

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