Clogged Airways and Choking
Many nursing home patients require attention when eating. Sometimes, a patient has a physical issue that causes them difficulty when swallowing, or they may not be able to feed themselves due to physical limitations. Additionally, cognitive impairments from conditions such as dementia or Alzheimer’s disease can make it very risky for a patient to attempt to feed himself or herself. Nursing homes should be aware of such issues and take appropriate measures, but, unfortunately, this does not always happen. Serious personal injuries and even wrongful death can happen when nursing homes breach the duty of care owed to a patient. At the Law Firm of Valerie J. Crown, Attorney at Law, P.C., our experienced Rockland County nursing home negligence lawyers work with families who have had a loved one suffer or die because of a nursing home’s breach of care involving clogged airways and choking.
Difficulty in eating, whether caused by a patient’s poor judgment due to cognitive issues or due to physical difficulties, can lead to choking, which, in turn, can cause brain damage or death. Clogged breathing tubes, which can result from improper monitoring of the patient or the failure of nursing staff to keep a patient’s breathing tube free from obstructions, can also cause these types of problems. Injuries and/or death from clogged breathing and choking are usually preventable with the exercise of due care. Issues such as improper training or inadequate staffing make it more likely than an injury or death will occur.Seek Compensation for Injuries or Death Caused by Clogged Airways and Choking
Nursing home negligence cases require proof of four legal elements: duty, breach of duty, damages, and causation. The first element, duty, simply means that there was something that the nursing home or its staff members was supposed to do (or to refrain from doing in some situations) for the patient. This duty is said to have been breached if the nursing home’s agents or employees did not do the thing that was required, like provide nursing assistance to feed the patient, or if they did something that they were not supposed to do under the circumstances, such as serving a food that is known to be a choking hazard to an at-risk patient. In the context of a nursing home negligence case, “damages” means that the patient suffered physical harm. “Causation” refers to the link between the defendant’s breach of duty and the patient’s damages.
Expert testimony may be required in order to prove the standard of care owed by a medical doctor or other professional in many nursing home injury or death cases. In order for the plaintiff to be awarded money damages at trial, he or she must provide evidence that convinces the jury, by a preponderance of the evidence, that the nursing home should be held liable. The jury has the job of deciding the amount of compensation due the plaintiff for pain and suffering, medical expenses, and other losses caused by the defendant’s negligence.Speak to a Nursing Home Negligence Attorney in Rockland County
There are many steps to a successful nursing negligence lawsuit, beginning with a review of the patient’s medical records by a competent medical professional. At the Law Firm of Valerie J. Crown, Attorney at Law, P.C., our lawyers work with a team of medical experts and investigators to determine whether negligence occurred and, if so, the amount of compensation that could be due the patient or his or her family as a result of misconduct related to clogged airways and choking. If you would like to find out more about the legal remedies available following an act of nursing home neglect or abuse, call us at 845.708.5900, contact us online, or call Valerie’s cell phone cell phone 24/7 at 845.598.8253 for an appointment. We serve clients throughout Rockland County and Greater New York, including nursing home residents from Westchester, Orange, and Dutchess Counties. Please be mindful that there is a statute of limitations for these cases, such that it is critically important that a claim be filed within the time allowed by law or else a case is subject to dismissal by the courts.