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Home’s commitment to improvement comes too late for one resident

Readers of our blog know well that we pay special attention to the issue of care delivered in nursing and specialty care facilities in Illinois. Because of the nature of the health care industry these days, the scope of that attention often requires an understanding of the law that goes beyond the boundaries of just one state.

Many companies manage and operate facilities in multiple states. Where that is the case, different state laws may come into play. And, of course, because of Medicare and Medicaid, federal laws may also be a factor. This is one reason why working with experienced legal help when you have a loved one who has suffered injury or death due to negligence or abuse of a professional care giver.

We see this in evidence in a case of a Kansas woman who died while in the care of a nursing home that once was owned, operated and managed by an Illinois-based firm.

The woman died at a nursing home in Hutchinson, Kansas, in October 2014 after eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, according to a federal suit filed by her family late last month. The suit alleges that she was given that sandwich by the home staff even though they knew she had trouble chewing and swallowing.

In fact, the suit says records clearly showed that she should be on a diet of pureed foods and thickened liquids. Despite that, the suit alleges the woman was “regularly” given peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

The Illinois company named in the suit handed over management of the facilities to a company in Tennessee last year and the new operators say they are working to improve conditions at the home. Sadly, that comes too late for the family in this case.

When families opt to put their loved ones into the care of a professional care facility it is because they have determined it is best for them. When someone is hurt or dies due to negligence in such circumstances, those delivering care should expect to be held accountable. To understand your rights and options, contact an experienced attorney for a consultation.