Sepsis in Nursing Homes
Sepsis is a life-threatening condition in which the body responds to an infection in a very severe way. If not properly treated, sepsis can quickly lead to permanent injury and even death. Unfortunately, sepsis affects the elderly, including those who live in nursing homes, at a higher rate than younger individuals. If you have a loved one who has been injured by or passed away due to sepsis while residing in a nursing home, Rockland County nursing home negligence attorney Valerie J. Crown can help. Our firm handles many types of lawsuits against nursing homes, including those resulting from personal injuries and wrongful death brought on by the failure to diagnose and/or properly treat sepsis.
As with other types of negligence actions, the plaintiff in a nursing home negligence lawsuit, arising from sepsis, has the burden of proving their claims. This means that the plaintiff must be able to present credible, legally admissible evidence that will persuade a jury that it is more likely than not that the defendant (often the nursing home owner, but sometimes specific medical personnel or others) had a duty of care to the plaintiff, that this duty was breached, that the plaintiff suffered losses, and that the defendant’s failure to exercise reasonable care was a substantial factor in causing the plaintiff’s damages.Nursing Home Negligence Cases May Require Expert Testimony
Most negligence lawsuits require some type of expert testimony. For example, in a car accident case in which the plaintiff was injured, he or she will most likely need to provide expert testimony as to the nature and extent of injuries suffered in the crash and the reasonableness and necessity of medical expenses related to the accident. In a nursing home negligence case, arising from sepsis, expert testimony may be required in order to prove not only the amount of damages to which the plaintiff is entitled, but also the standard of care that was applicable to the situation and whether that standard was breached by the defendant(s). In so doing, the expert witness will need to review the patient’s medical records, noting when the patient reached the various stages of sepsis (sepsis, severe sepsis, septic shock, etc.), the type of infection from which the condition arose (pneumonia, bloodstream infection, kidney infection, etc.), any specific risk factors exhibited by the patient, and when action was taken by the nursing home staff.
If the plaintiff is able to prove his or her case at trial, he or she may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, and other damages caused by the defendant’s failure to abide by the applicable standard of care. If the nursing home patient passed away due to the defendant’s negligence, the personal representative of the patient’s estate may be able to assert a claim for wrongful death, through which they may seek payment of funeral and burial expenses and other damages. Sometimes, punitive damages are possible in negligence cases, but this is the exception rather than the rule. Generally speaking, only in “extreme” cases are punitive damages awarded.Consult a Knowledgeable Nursing Home Negligence Attorney in Rockland County
Sepsis is a serious medical condition that must be swiftly and appropriately dealt with, especially in elderly patients. Unfortunately, this does not always happen. Understaffing, lack of training, improper supervision of staff, and other acts of negligence can result in a patient’s condition rapidly deteriorating, causing serious injuries or death. Those who have been injured by sepsis or who have lost loved ones due to sepsis in a nursing home environment should promptly speak to an experienced nursing home negligence lawyer about the possibility of filing a claim for compensation against the responsible party, as there are strict deadlines by which a lawsuit must be filed. At the Law Firm of Valerie J. Crown, Attorney at Law, P.C., in Rockland County, we serve all of Greater New York, including those injured in nursing homes in Rockland, Westchester, Dutchess, Orange, and Ulster Counties. For a free consultation to discuss your case, contact us online, call us at 845-708-5900, or call Valerie’s cell phone 24/7 at 845-598-8253.