Caretaker Failure to Monitor Resident Results in Deadly Fall And Wrongful Death Lawsuit
Lucia Payne had no children but was extremely close to her niece, Dina Farrar. After Lucia died from injuries suffered in an avoidable fall from bed, Ms. Farrar hired a local attorney to investigate her potential claim. That attorney asked David Terry of Terry Law Firm to become involved in the case given his nearly twenty years of handling cases against the nursing home industry.
After the Terry Law Firm completed a thorough investigation that included reviewing a 24 page report by state investigators that found significate errors with the care provided to Lucia, the Terry Law Firm filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Bethesda Long Term Care Inc. d/b/a Bethesda Meadow, Bethesda Health Group Inc, and Midwest Staffing Solutions, LLC, who was working at Bethesda Meadow as an agency employee..
What’s the Purpose of a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
A wrongful death lawsuit is filed when a nursing home has failed to follow the standard of care and that failure results in the death of an individual for whom that are providing care. Typically, when there is a wrongful death, there will be federal and state requirements that the nursing home failed to follow when caring for residents. It is the job of nursing homes, their employees and agency employees to meet the medical and personal needs of anyone in their care, like Lucia Payne. This this includes temporary nurses and/or nursing assistants from hiring agencies. Wrongful death lawsuits are brought to bring awareness to the mistreatment of nursing home residents and with the hope that better care of surviving residents will result.
Claims of the Petition
Lucia was admitted to Bethesda Meadow in Ellisville Missouri on February 11, 2017. She was reliant on others to help her with dressing, hygiene, and bed mobility, and depended on Bethesda employees to safely assist her with her activities of daily living. She had a known fall history and was therefore designated by Bethesda employees as a high fall risk resident. Because Lucia was known to be restless in her bed, her care plan required the bed to be in a low position and a mat placed on the floor beside her bed in case she were to fall out of it. Despite the precautions that were supposed to be in place, Lucia had several falls from her bed and from chairs in her room as well as the dining room.
On March 21, 2017 Bethesda did not have enough employees of their own, so they asked an employment agency, Midwest Staffing Solutions, for assistance. One of the employees from Midwest Staffing Solutions was assigned to Lucia. This employee had no prior knowledge of the level of care Lucia required to be safe and no one from Bethesda Meadow who did know her care needs told him how to keep her safe.
According to the lawsuit, “Other employees knew the level of care Lucia required and told state investigators that Lucia was ‘very quick’ and that they would “never walk away from [Lucia] during care.” This critical information was not provided to the Agency Employee and he was permitted to provide care for Lucia and other residents without supervision.”
While in the care of this agency employee, Lucia’s bed was raised to a high position while the employee provided care to her. However, the employee walked away from Lucia and left her bed in the high position. Predictably, she fell from her bed and hit her head on the bare floor. The agency employee placed Lucia back in her bed and did not seek any assistance to help her.
In this fall, Lucia suffered significant trauma to her left eye, a cervical compression fracture, severe swelling, bruises and cuts that were bleeding. Lucia was eventually taken to a local hospital where she died the following day of craniocerebrospinal trauma that was a direct result of the negligent care she received from the Bethesda Meadow facility, and the Midwest Staffing Solutions Agency Employee.
You can read the full petition here:
Who is Bethesda Meadow?
Bethesda Meadow is one of three Bethesda facilities in the St. Louis area. Bethesda Meadow is located at 322 Old State Road, Ellisville MO, 63021, is>primarily owned and operated by Bethesda Long Term Care Inc. and managed by Bethesda Health Group Inc. These entities are responsible for hiring and firing staff, determining staffing levels and the ratio of staff-to-resident, as well as providing adequate staff training. The other two Bethesda facilities are Bethesda Dilworth, located at 9645 Big Bend Blvd., St. Louis, Missouri and Bethesda Southgate located at 5943 Telegraph Road, St. Louis, Missouri. Both are owned and operated by Bethesda Long Term Care Inc. and managed by Bethesda Health Group Inc.
Who is Midwest Staffing Solutions LLC
Midwest Staffing Solutions LLC. currently operating from 10016 Office Center Avenue, St. Louis Missouri and owned by Dennis Pohl and Barbara Pohl. This agency held its employees out to nursing homes as “being trained to provide excellent care, following facility policies and procedures and to provide care in accordance with the state and federal regulatory rules.”
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