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Michigan Nursing Home Lawsuit For Bed Sore

Our nursing home neglect attorneys at Buckfire & Buckfire, P.C. have significant experience when it comes to filing a Michigan nursing home bed sore lawsuit on behalf of an injured patient and their family. As a resource to our clients, we have provided an example below of what an actual complaint looks like when filing a Michigan nursing home lawsuit for bed sores.

 

STATE OF MICHIGAN

IN THE CIRCUIT COURT FOR THE COUNTY OF SAGINAW

 

JOHN DOE and JANE  DOE,

                                                                                                Case No. 13-        NM

            Plaintiffs,

                                                                                    Hon:

            vs.

 

XYZ NURSING HOME LLC,

and MARY DOCTOR, M.D., jointly and severally,

      

Defendants,

 

______________________________/

LAWRENCE J. BUCKFIRE (P42841)   

Buckfire & Buckfire, P.C.                        

Attorneys for Plaintiff                                          

25800 Northwestern Highway, #890

Southfield, MI  48075                              

 (248) 569-4646

                                                            /

 

There is no other pending or resolved civil

action arising out of same transaction or

occurrence as alleged in this complaint.

 

_______________________________

LAWRENCE J. BUCKFIRE

 

PLAINTIFFS’ COMPLAINT AND JURY DEMAND

      

NOW COMES the Plaintiffs, by and through their attorneys, Buckfire & Buckfire, P.C., and for their Complaint and Jury Demand states as follows:

            1.  Plaintiff John Doe (hereinafter referred to as “Plaintiff”) and Jane Doe are individuals residing in Tuscola County, Michigan.   At all times relevant hereto, they were husband and wife.

            2.  Defendant XYZ NURSING HOME , LLC is a Michigan corporation doing business Saginaw County, Michigan and owns, operates, and manages the nursing home at 123 Main Street, Saginaw, Michigan.

            3.  Defendant Mary Doctor, M.D. is a physician licensed to practice medicine in the State of Michigan and at all times relevant hereto was engaged in the practice of internal medicine in the County of Saginaw, and State of Michigan.  She holds herself out as a specialist in internal medicine.

            4.  That at all times material hereto, the Defendants have the original records regarding the treatment of John Doe, in their possession and control.

            5.  That at all times material herein, Defendant Mary Doctor, M.D. was the agent, servant and/or employee of XYZ Nursing Home LLC, either real or ostensible, and was acting in the course and scope of said employment when said doctor treated Plaintiff John Doe and violated the standard of practice of her profession in the care and treatment of John Doe as stated herein.

6.  That at all times material herein, there existed a patient-doctor relationship between Plaintiff John Doe and all of the named Defendants.

            7. That Plaintiff was an inpatient cardiac patient at the Hospital in Saginaw, MI from to December 30, 2008 to January 12, 2009 where he underwent a 4-vessel coronary artery bypass grafting during his admission.  He was discharged from that hospital on January 12, 2009 and transferred to the nursing home in Saginaw, Michigan .

            8. That on January 12, 2009, John Doe was admitted to Defendant nursing home facility with a primary diagnosis of sepsis and metabolic encephalopathy status post Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting.

9.  That upon his admission to Defendant nursing home, Plaintiff underwent an initial Nursing Admission Evaluation performed by and LPN, which included a multi-system assessment of the body, Braden Scale completion and a head-to-toe skin assessment. The evaluator noted that the patient needed assistance with bed mobility, bathing, and toileting.

10.  The Nursing Admission Evaluation also noted Potential Risk Factors for skin breakdown included recent surgery; arterial insufficiency diagnosis, diabetes mellitus, and HOB elevated the majority of time.

11. That the Braden Scale Assessment showed that the patient was at risk for predicting pressure sores.  The skin assessment indicated that the patient had an “excoriated scrotum, excoriated buttocks with drainage and black, no open areas.”

            12. That he was also seen by his facility assigned physician, Mary Doctor, M.D., on January 12, 2009.  Said doctor  completed a medical history/ physical examination on January 12, 2009 and concluded that skin condition was “good.”

13.  That a physician order was written on January 13, 2009  at 3:00 a.m. by an RN working the midnight shift. The order states “bilat buttocks-cleanse with normal saline, pat dry, apply silvasorb gel, four by fours, cover with abdominal dressing, secure with tape every 72 hours.” The chart does not indicate if this order was a verbal/telephone order from the physician. This order was signed by the physician; however the date was cut off in the copy available.

14.  Plaintiff was seen by Defendant Doctor again on 01/14/09.   The Doctor performed a physical examination on the patient and noted that his skin condition was “good.”  She also noted that the patient was incontinent. The progress note authored by the Doctor  indicates “no rashes, lesions, ulcers” noted to skin.  The January 14, 2009 note was the last documented date that Vincent was seen by the physician in charge of his care and progress.

15. Than on January 15, 2009, the Nutritional Risk Assessment performed by the nursing home dietician noted that the patient’s skin condition had “multiple impaired areas” and commented that they were on the “bilateral buttocks.”  Her assessment did not indicate that the patient had any pressure sores on that date.  She noted “skin risk is increased d/t recent surgery and two incision sites, arterial insufficiency, DM, HOB elevates majority of time.  Sites include chest incision, thigh incision, scrotum excoriation, bilateral buttock excoriated with drainage.  Braden score 17/nutrition 3.”

16.  The Resident Care Flow Sheet indicates that the Plaintiff was to be bathed twice per week in the shower (Mon-Thur) but it does not indicate that this was done.  The Resident Care Flow Sheet does not indicate the Plaintiff’s mobility or have any note that the patient should be, or was, turned or re-positioned at any interval while in bed.  It also does not indicate that there were any “positional and pressure relieving devices used” during the admission.

17.  Plaintiff was discharged home on January 23, 2009 with home health services.  The discharge instructions noted that the patient required the following treatment at home:  “Cleanse buttocks w/normal saline, apply silvasorb gel, cover with 4x4’s and abd pads, change every 72 hours and as needed.”

 18. Than on January 24, 2009, Plaintiff was assessed by the home health nurse assigned to his care.  It was in consideration of her assessment findings (which included a fever and large sacral ulcer), that he was taken back to the Hospital on January 24, 2009. Upon admission to the hospital, he was diagnosed with a Stage 3 pressure ulcer (positive for MRSA) which required subsequent surgical debridement on two separate occasions and treatment with long-term intravenous antibiotics.  He has undergone lengthy hospitalization, an additional surgery (a colostomy), and significant medical treatment as a result of his pressure sore for infections.  He has also incurred significant medical expenses and will continue to do so in the future.

 

COUNT I

XYZ NURSING HOME, LLC

            19.  Plaintiff incorporates paragraphs 1-18 as though fully incorporated herein.

            20.  That at all time material herein, Defendant XYZ Nursing Home, LLC and each of them, their agents, servants and/or employees either real or ostensible owed duties to Plaintiff, pursuant to the patient-doctor relationship that existed between them, to carry out the standard of practice of their profession in their care Plaintiff, including the duty to:

      A. Properly assess the patient for skin breakdown during his admission.

 B. Properly describe and document any skin breakdown on the patient during his admission.

 C. Initiate an appropriate plan of care and treatment for skin breakdown prevention after performing the initial risk evaluation.

 D. Notify attending physicians of the results of risk assessments and to obtain orders for appropriate skin care treatment.

 E. Obtain orders and provide for pressure relieving devices for the patient in a timely fashion.

 F. Re-position the patient on an appropriate basis to minimize the risk or likelihood of the development of pressure sores.

 G.  Bath the patient on a regular basis.

 H.  Obtain orders and provide for skin care treatment in a timely fashion.

 I.   Perform inspections and evaluate the patient’s coccyx for skin breakdown on a regular basis.

 J.  Determine the cause of the patient’s skin breakdown and initiate an appropriate plan of care.

K.  Request a physician consultation and/or notify a physician of observations of skin breakdown.

L.  Other standards of care for the nursing staff in charge of the patient that will become known through the course of discovery.

 

23.       That the nursing staff at Defendant XYZ Nursing Home, LLC in disregard of said duties, were negligent and/or did not follow the duties imposed upon them to carry out the standard of practice of their profession in their care of Plaintiff, but did breach said duties in at least on and possibly more of the following particulars, so far as it is presently known, because of their failure to:

A.  Properly assess the patient for skin breakdown during his admission.

                                        B.  Properly describe and document any skin breakdown on the patient during his admission.

                                        C.  To initiate an appropriate plan of care and treatment for skin breakdown prevention after performing the initial risk evaluation.

                                       D.  Notify attending physicians of the results of risk assessments and to obtain orders for appropriate skin care treatments.

                                       E.  Obtain orders and provide for a pressure relieving devices for the patient in a timely fashion.

                                      F.   Re-position the patient on an appropriate basis to minimize the risk or likelihood of the development of pressure sores.

                                      G.  Bath the patient on a regular basis.

                                      H.  Obtain orders and provide for skin care treatment in a timely fashion.

                                      I.  Perform inspections and evaluate the patient’s coccyx for skin breakdown on a regular basis.

                                     J.  Determine the causes of the patient’s skin breakdown and initiate an appropriate plan of care.

                                     K.  Request a physician consultation and/or notify a physician of observations of a skin breakdown.

                                     L.  Other standards of care for the nursing staff in charge of the patient that will become known through the course of discovery.

 

24.       That as a direct and proximate result of the acts, omissions, negligence and malpractice as herein alleged, Plaintiff John Doe:

                                      A.  sustained severe bodily injuries which were painful and disabling

                                      B.  required medical treatment, surgeries, hospitalization, nursing care, assistance with activities of daily living, and medication and will continue to require many of these things in the future

                                      C.   endured pain and suffering, past, present, and future

                                      D.   suffered shock and emotional damage, past, present, and future

                                      E.    has unable to attend to his usual affairs and was deprived of the pleasures of life and suffered a loss of enjoyment of life and will be unable to do so in the future

                                      F.    incurred medical expenses and costs and other expenses, past, present, and future

                                      G.    required attendant care services, supervision, transportation,            assistance activities of daily living, household services assistance,    past, present, and future.

                                      H.  Other damages and injuries that become known through the course of discovery

 

WHEREFORE, Plaintiff prays that this Court grant judgment against each Defendant in an amount in excess of Twenty-Five ($25,000.00) Thousand Dollars exclusive of interest, costs, and attorneys fees.

COUNT II

 

MARY DOCTOR, M.D.

            25.       Plaintiff incorporates paragraphs 1-24 as though fully incorporated herein.

            26.       That at all time material herein, Defendant Doctor  owed duties to Plaintiff, pursuant to the patient-doctor relationship that existed between them, to carry out the standard of practice of her profession in her care of Plaintiff, including the duty to:

  1. To perform a complete physical assessment of all body systems, addressing any and all areas of concern (including skin condition) at the time of admission
  2. To appropriately document in the clinical record the findings of the physical assessment and any abnormal deviations of the patients overall health status.
  3. To implement appropriate treatment for abnormal deviations of health observed upon initial assessment.

     D.  To provide ongoing assessment and follow-up for any previously noted health concerns or abnormalities.

  1. To assess the progress and effectiveness of the current treatment regimen and document the findings in the clinical record.
  1. To prudently recognize when current treatment regimen is ineffective and change the current treatment when medically necessary and indicated.
  1. To issue physician orders for the nursing staff to turn and reposition the patient on a regular basis to reduce the likelihood of developing pressure sores.
  1. To issue physician orders for a special mattress and equipment that would reduce the likelihood of the patient developing pressure sores.
  1. Other acts and omissions that will become know through the course of discovery.

 

            27.  That at all time material herein, Defendant Doctor , in disregard of said duties, were negligent and/or did not follow the duties imposed upon them to carry out the standard of practice of their profession in their care of Defendant, but did breach said duties in at least on and possibly more of the following particulars, so far as it is presently known, because of her failure to:

  1. To perform a complete physical assessment of all body systems, addressing any and all areas of concern (including skin condition) at the time of admission
  2. To appropriately document in the clinical record the findings of the physical assessment and any abnormal deviations of the patients overall health status.
  3. To implement appropriate treatment for abnormal deviations of health observed upon initial assessment.
  4. To provide ongoing assessment and follow-up for any previously noted health concerns or abnormalities.
  5. To assess the progress and effectiveness of the current treatment regimen and document the findings in the clinical record.
  6. To prudently recognize when current treatment regimen is ineffective and change the current treatment when medically necessary and indicated.
  7. To issue physician orders for the nursing staff to turn and reposition the patient on a regular basis to reduce the likelihood of developing pressure sores.
  8. To issue physician orders for a special mattress and equipment that would reduce the likelihood of the patient developing pressure sores.
  9. Other acts and omissions that will become know through the course of discovery.

28.       That as a direct and proximate result of the acts, omissions, negligence and malpractice as herein alleged, Plaintiff John Doe:

                        A. sustained severe bodily injuries which were painful and disabling

                        B. required medical treatment, surgeries, hospitalization, nursing care, assistance with activities of daily living, and medication and will continue to require many of these things in the future

                       C. endured pain and suffering, past, present, and future

                       D. suffered shock and emotional damage, past, present, and future

                       E. has unable to attend to his usual affairs and was deprived of the pleasures of life and suffered a loss of enjoyment of life and will be unable to do so in the future

                      F. incurred medical expenses and costs and other expenses, past, present, and future.

                     G. required attendant care services, supervision, transportation, assistance activities of daily living, household services assistance, past, present, and future.

                     H.  Other damages and injuries that become known through the course of discovery

 

            WHEREFORE, Plaintiff prays that this Court grant judgment against each Defendant in an amount in excess of Twenty-Five ($25,000.00) Thousand Dollars exclusive of interest, costs, and attorneys fees.

COUNT III

LOSS OF CONSORTIUM

  1. Plaintiff hereby incorporates paragraphs 1-28 as though fully incorporated herein.
  2. At all relevant times, Plaintiffs were married and continue to be married.

    31. That as a result of the malpractice and negligent acts of the Defendants, and each of them, the Plaintiff Jane  Doe was caused to suffer, and will continue to suffer in the future, loss of consortium, loss of society, affection, assistance, and other losses, all to the detriment of their marital relationship.

   32. That all the aforesaid injuries and damages were caused solely and proximately by the negligence of the Defendants

            WHEREFORE, Plaintiff Jane  Doe prays that this Court grant judgment against each Defendant in an amount in excess of Twenty-Five ($25,000.00) Thousand Dollars exclusive of interest, costs, and attorneys fees.

DEMAND FOR TRIAL BY JURY IS HEREBY MADE.

                                                                                    Respectfully submitted,

 

                                                                                    ___________________________

                                                                                    Lawrence J. Buckfire (P42841)

                                                                                    BUCKFIRE & BUCKFIRE, P.C.

                                                                                    25800 Northwestern Highway, #890

                                                                                    Southfield, MI  48075

                                                                                    (248) 569-4646

Dated:  April 1, 2013

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