$500,000 Settlement for Nursing Home Neglect

An 87-year-old Nursing Home Resident died as a result of failure of the staff to to apply wrist restraints.

The resident was admitted to a New Jersey Nursing Home for short-term subacute care following goiter surgery. The patient was transferred to the home with restraints to prevent her from pulling out her tracheostomy tube. Upon arrival at the home, the restraints were removed for 2 days, during which time the nurses noted that the patient continuously pulled at the tube. After the family complained, a doctor at the Nursing Home ordered that they be reapplied. The staff failed to carry out the order, claiming that they were unable to locate any restraints. No restraints were ever applied, and three days later, the patient dislodged the tube and died due to asphyxiation.

The nursing staff had complained that they were overwhelmed and that there was inadequate staff and supplies. Suit was instituted for this nursing home abuse based upon violations of the Nursing Home Resident’s Rights, under NJSA 30:13-8, seeking compensatory and punitive damages as well as attorney fees and costs.

Ken Elwood and another attorney represented the family.