Life Care Centers of America, a corporation with nursing home locations all over the country including six in Kentucky, has been found responsible by a jury for causing the wrongful death of a resident. The jury awarded over $5,557,000 in damages to the family members of the woman killed as a result of the nursing home staff’s neglect.
Sophia Alcon, the 77-year-old victim, had been a resident of the Life Care Center of Pueblo in Pueblo, Colorado for six months at the time of her passing. Throughout her time at the Life Care Center, Alcon was repeatedly subjected to neglectful and abusive treatment by facility staff. For reasons the nursing staff could not explain, Alcon was often found to be covered in bruises. She began losing weight at an alarming rate after moving in. When her family visited her, they frequently found her lying in her own fecal matter. Nursing staff would refuse to properly clean and bathe the elderly woman. As a result, she developed numerous urinary tract infections and renal failure. Alcon was often allowed to become dehydrated. She developed multiple cases of aspiration pneumonia, as well as bed sores. Ultimately, severe dehydration and renal failure were blamed as being major contributors to her death in 2013.
Sophia’s son, George, filed a claim on behalf of his mother and his nine siblings. His claim sought damages for the extraordinary physical and emotional suffering his mother endured, as well as the suffering and anguish endured by himself and his siblings at watching their mother undergo this treatment. The trial on the Alcon family’s claims went on for two weeks and included testimony from Sophia’s children on their mother’s condition, testimony from nurses no longer working at the home who described Sophia’s poor treatment there, and medical experts who examined Sophia both before and after her death. Additionally, a representative from the local Department of Public Health and Environment testified to the poor conditions at the Life Care Center. Ultimately, the jury awarded the Alcons $57,066.43 in economic damages (essentially, reimbursement for the costs of Alcon’s injuries), $500,000 for Alcon’s wrongful death, and $5 million in punitive damages intended to punish the facility for its role in Alcon’s painful death.
Life Care Centers of America operates some 200 nursing homes nationwide. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has fined the corporation repeatedly for its violations of care standards in its facilities, and reports numerous resident complaints of abuse and even other wrongful deaths among those living at a Life Care Center-operated facility.
If your loved one has been the victim of neglect or abuse at a Kentucky nursing home or assisted living facility, seek the compensation deserved for this abhorrent treatment by contacting the compassionate and determined Louisville nursing home abuse lawyers at the Slechter law firm for a consultation, at 502-694-5407.