Damages Recoverable

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  • Compensatory Damages
    • Loss of Quality of Life
    • Suffering
    • Pain
    • Past and Future Medical Expenses
    • Loss of Earnings
  • Damages for Wrongful Death
    • Loss of Society
    • Loss of Comfort
    • Loss of Care
    • Loss of Compassion
    • Loss of Economic Benefit to Heirs
  • Special Damages Recoverable Under Elder Abuse Statutes
    • Civil Penalties for Each Statutory Violation
    • Punitive Damages Against the Facility or Owners to Punish or to Make an Example
    • Attorney Fees

The special damages set forth above related specifically to elder neglect are the result of a nationally recognized crisis in elder care.  As a result, both State and Federal legislation has been passed where attorneys have been called upon to “take up the cause” for victims of nursing home neglect.  The laws which have been enacted establish increased damages recoverable for victims and their families who have suffered from neglect at the hands of their caregivers. Such types of damage have not previously been available in traditional personal injury or medical malpractice areas of the law.

Through hard work and aggressive representation, the attorneys at The Gebler Firm, PC are proud to report that they have been very successful in holding nursing homes accountable for their neglect.  Unfortunately, once the damage is done, the only way to punish the nursing homes is by way of monetary damages.  Some examples of recoveries include:

Robert, a dependent adult who underwent surgery at the hands of an unqualified physician who was employed by a hospital touting an allegedly new minimally invasive technique for performing surgery.  The unqualified surgeon cut into the patient’s brain stem and the patient was left in a semi-vegetative state for life.  Settlement was achieved with both the physician and hospital for an amount in excess of three million dollars.

Gladys, a 90 year old lady who was a resident of a nursing home.  When her Medicare benefits ran out and she became a Medi-Cal recipient, she was moved to a section of the nursing home farthest away from the nursing station which was staffed with the most inexperienced nurses.  In a 30 day period of time she went from a vibrant socially interactive elderly lady to a bedridden, non-communicative hermit.  Her family asked every day about how much she was eating and drinking and they were informed that she was eating 75-100% of all her meals and drinking plenty of water.  When her family finally insisted on her transfer to an acute hospital, they were informed that she weighed only 90 pounds (from 121) the month prior.  She was so severely dehydrated that her kidneys stopped functioning and she had a severe urinary tract infection which had entered her blood stream.  She died two days later of overwhelming sepsis, starvation and dehydration.  The case was settled on behalf of her surviving children for wrongful death/elder abuse in excess of $750,000.00.

The “typical” case involves some or all of the following scenarios:  Elder falls and breaks a hip and is transferred from an acute hospital to a nursing or “rehabilitation” home for “short term” physical and occupational therapy.  Rather than performing aggressive physical therapy as ordered, the nursing home staff rarely assists the elder out of bed.  Usually within two weeks of being bedridden, the elder develops a urinary tract infection, pneumonia and one or more decubitus ulcers (bedsores or pressure sores).  Family members who are unaware of the necessity of frequent turning and repositioning, report that they visited for 6-8 hours at a time without seeing anyone turn and reposition their loved one.  More often than not the pressure sores become infected from lack of hygiene and eventually involve the bone.  We have achieved settlements in numerous cases involving variations on the above theme in amounts varying from $100,000 to $500,000.

Should you have any questions regarding the treatment your loved one has received, please call for a free consultation at 1-800-871-6998.

Injured Elder