Purches vs. Lexington Health Care Center Of Orland Park, Inc.

Introduction:

This new case out of Cook County, Illinois involves a complicated set of facts and injuries related to bed sores and falls. The plaintiff was a nursing home resident and is suing the facility she resided at during the incidents for injuries she sustained while living there.

Filed: August 4, 2016

Jurisdiction: Circuit Court of Illinois, Cook County

Category: Nursing Home; Bed Sores; Falls

Plaintiff: Betty Purches

Defendant(s): Lexington Health Care Center Of Orland Park, INC., D/B/A Lexington Of Orland Park

Summary:

The plaintiff in this case is bringing her cause of action pursuant to the Illinois Nursing Home Care Act 210 ILCS 45/1-101. In her complaint, she claims that while living at the Lexington Health Care Center of Orland Park (Lexington) she developed sacral bed sores. Also, she argues that they worsened during her time at Lexington despite the facility’s duty to care for her. Additionally, she states that on November 4, 2014 she suffered a fall and injured herself while residing at the same institution. This fall occurred even though she was at high risk for falls to the knowledge of both Lexington and Purches according to her suit. The next day, November 5, 2014, she was taken to Silver Cross Hospital to treat these injuries and was treated for brain, hand, and other related injuries. She brought suit against the nursing home to recover for the harm that resulted from these incidents.

Claims and Damages:

Though Purches suffered two unique types of injuries-falls and bed sores-much of her lawsuit arises out of only one law, the Illinois Nursing Home Care Act. The two issues share similar allegations though and here are some of the plaintiff’s more important claims: the defendant nursing home did not create or update to prevent the plaintiff from falling; the defendant did not notice or properly treat the plaintiff after she fell; the defendant did not sufficiently monitor or provide the plaintiff with appropriate staff or resources; the defendant did not follow the recommendations of the plaintiff’s doctor; the defendant did not create or update a plan to prevent the development of bed sores on the plaintiff; and the defendant did not notice or treat the plaintiff’s bed sores.

The actual complaint contains other allegations, many of them tied to specific portions of the Nursing Home Act. According to the plaintiff, the sum of them caused the following damages:

  • Hand injuries
  • Brain trauma and swelling
  • Complicated bed sores
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of quality of life
  • Medical and other expenses

Insights:

  • One of the first things to establish is that the nursing home facility had knowledge or should have had knowledge of the plaintiff’s risk for falls. This will amplify the actual injury and make the defendant more culpable.
  • While both bed sore and fall cases fetch high recoveries normally, they typically obtain some of the highest levels of compensation when combined together.
  • If it is true that the defendant facility was told of the plaintiff’s risks but still did nothing, this might indicate a breakdown in policies and procedures. To ensure this is the case, counsel should review the home’s policies and procedures as well as their history of compliance with them across all residents.

Related Laws/Cases:

  • 210 ILCS 45/
  • 210 ILCS 45/3-601
  • 210 ILCS 45/3-602
  • 755 ILCS 5/27-6
  • 740 ILCS 180/1
  • 42 USCA §1396r

Next Up:

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