Nursing Home Hit with Huge Verdict for Abuse and Neglect

A Sacramento jury slammed an area nursing home with a $28 million verdict last week after it found the home liable for elder abuse and neglect. Before deliberations, attorney Ed Dudensing told the jury to, “make them feel it.” It did. The nursing home, as expected, will appeal.

What is believed to be the largest verdict of its kind, the jury hoped to send a message that if you’re going to run a nursing home, you better do it in a way that doesn’t jeopardize the health and welfare of its residents.

The jury came back with the huge punitive damages award the day after it found that the corporation Horizon West Healthcare and its nursing homes Colonial Healthcare committed elder abuse upon 79-year-old Frances Tanner. Tanner, a government worker who at one time worked for the FBI and Internal Revenue Service, was admitted into Colonial in March of 2005. After suffering a fall that went undiagnosed for days, she died seven months later for an infected bed sore.

Colonial Healthcare had a history of problems with regulators, and had been cited in the past for poor care. Tanner’s death resulted in its fourth citation in recent years. Dudensing contended that Horizon Healthcare was deliberately understaffed, which resulted in inadequate care and monitoring, leaving its residents, including Tanner, exposed to harm.

Source: Sacramento Bee

The San Diego elder abuse and neglect lawyers at Walton Law Firm provide free consultations to individuals and families who believe a loved one has been abused or neglected in the nursing home or assisted living setting. Cases are accepted in all Southern California counties, including San Diego, Orange, Riverside, Los Angeles, San Bernardino and Ventura. Call (866) 607-1325 for a free and confidential consultation.