The son and daughter of a 97-year-old resident of a Florida assisted living facility has filed a wrongful death negligence lawsuit against the assisted living facility, alleging that the resident was left outside in the excessive heat for about six hours on July 5, 2017 after she fell from her scooter and was unable to get back on the scooter The resident had driven her electric scooter into the assisted living facility’s courtyard so that she could read her Bible, after which she fell to the ground (she was a known fall risk).
After the resident was found unconscious on the ground by the family of another resident, her temperature was 105.7 degrees and she was found to be severely burned by the sun. She suffered sepsis that was caused by heat stroke.
After being discharged from the hospital a few days later, she was sent back to the assisted living facility but was subsequently admitted to a nursing home that was owned by the same company that owned the assisted living facility. She died on September 29, 2017. The woman’s death certificate listed the cause of death as a fall from a scooter, heat stroke, and severe burns on her feet.
The family’s assisted living negligence lawsuit alleges that the resident had fallen at least 14 times while she was in the assisted living facility, including at least one fall that occurred in the courtyard. With such knowledge of her prior falls, the family alleges that the assisted living facility was negligent in not providing proper supervision and by failing to keep her safe.
The resident’s daughter stated with regard to her mother’s condition after the incident, “She was in horrific pain. She used to scream when they would come to change her bandages. It literally broke your heart to see her like that. The dementia she had afterwards was ten-fold. She was like a little child.”
The daughter continued, “[My mother] was 97 and as feisty and ornery as she had ever been in her life before this happened. She always had a fall risk, and that is why we had her in assisted living. This didn’t have to happen. She didn’t have a heart attack. She didn’t have a stroke. It was the heat. In this day and age in Florida, one would think people would make sure their residents aren’t burning to death.”
A spokesperson for the defendant assisted living facility stated in response to the lawsuit, ” … providing compassionate care to our residents while ensuring they receive the utmost respect, dignity and independence is our highest priority. We take any allegation to the contrary seriously. We will not discuss specifics of any individual as it would violate the privacy rights of that resident.”
If you or a loved one suffered injuries (or worse) while a resident of an assisted living facility in the United States, you should promptly contact a local assisted living claim lawyer in your state who may investigate your assisted living negligence claim for you and file an assisted living claim on your behalf, if appropriate.
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