Fatal Hospital Bed Fall Leads to Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Illinois
A woman has filed a wrongful death lawsuit in Illinois against a hospital, alleging that the facility is liable for allowing her mother to fall out of a hospital bed and suffer fatal injuries.
The medical malpractice lawsuit was filed October 22 in Madison County Circuit Court of Illinois by Roberta Cruthis, whose mother, Alice Davis, died at St. Joseph’s Hospital of Highland after a hospital bed fall on June 18, 2008. According to a report in the Madison Record, Davis was trying to get out of the bed when she fell, suffering injuries that ultimately resulted in her death on June 25, 2008.
The wrongful death complaint claims that hospital staff was aware that Davis was a fall risk, so they attached a close call clip to her gown that should have let them know when she tried to leave her bed. However, Cruthis alleges that the hospital nursing staff was negligent in failing to properly inspect the bed alarm, using a close call clip that they knew or should have known did not work properly and failing to put proper safety measures in place for her mother.
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According to the FDA, hospital bed injuries have resulted in at least death since 1985, most of which involve elderly, frail or confused patients. Besides falling, there are also risks of entrapment and strangulation due to the safety rails used to keep patients in bed.
Earlier this year, the FDA released guidance on hospital bed safety that warns the railings are the most dangerous parts of a hospital bed, despite being a safety feature designed to prevent falls. Six of seven “zones of entrapment” identified by the FDA dealt with the hospital bed railings. Besides entrapment, the greatest risk of falling from a hospital bed appears to be due to patients trying to get over the railing.
Since most hospital beds are motorized, there is also a risk of fire due to electrical shorts and proper maintenance. These risks can be minimized by regular inspection of power cords, keeping beds free from dust and lint, inspecting control panels for signs of liquid damage and keeping linens and clothes away from outlets and power sources.
BonitaNovember 16, 2019 at 12:01 pm
On medications for high sugars nurse gave me medication for nausea I fell out of the bed the nurse was walking back in the room I was trying to get comfortable because of being dehydrated the ivy was put in my hand I was trying to lay my hand flat I moved back and then I fell out of the bed the nurse and 2 other ladies came in and helped me up then the chief hospitalist came in and said we[Show More]On medications for high sugars nurse gave me medication for nausea I fell out of the bed the nurse was walking back in the room I was trying to get comfortable because of being dehydrated the ivy was put in my hand I was trying to lay my hand flat I moved back and then I fell out of the bed the nurse and 2 other ladies came in and helped me up then the chief hospitalist came in and said we need to do a ex ray to make sure there are. No injuries My news did a incednt report but I thought I was suppose to do this report they told me no the nurse did the report I asked for a copy they told me they do everything on computer I coudnt get a copy. I dont know ccx what the nurse wrote on this report
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