Stethoscope Wrapped Around a Gavel

According to the National Center on Elder Abuse,  elder mistreatment (abuse and neglect) is defined as “intentional actions that cause harm or create a serious risk of harm to a vulnerable elder by a caregiver or other person who stands in a trust relationship to the elder.”

Personal injury lawyers at Berkowitz and Hanna LLC have litigated many elder abuse cases, where medical malpractice and/or nursing home negligence have contributed to an elder’s harm or untimely death. Recently, CBS13 in Sacramento reported on a lawsuit filed against two hospitals—for elder abuse and negligence leading to the wrongful death of an elderly Lodi woman.

82-year-old Doris Scorpiniti, who was admitted to Lodi Memorial Hospital for chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder and shortness of breath, suffered a fall in the hospital’s bathroom. The lawsuit alleges that the elderly patient was left unattended on the wet floor for more than twenty minutes due to understaffing. No X-Ray was taken, but she was given pain medication and then sent home.

Two days later, she was readmitted to the hospital, where an X-Ray showed that she had suffered a near complete collapse of the vertebrae in her back. She was then sent for rehabilitation at Gross Convalescent Hospital, where she allegedly received improper care, causing her “to develop severe and ‘avoidable’ pressure ulcers, dehydration, malnutrition, infection, bruising and cuts.” She died two months from the date she was first admitted to Lodi Memorial Hospital.

By 2050, notes Berkowitz and Hanna LLC, people aged 65 and older are expected to represent 20% of the total U.S. population, with 19 million falling into the 85 years+ demographic. Elder abuse is a growing concern, and one that will continue to affect millions of Americans.

Note: Berkowitz and Hanna LLC did not represent any of the parties in this case.

Photo by Sergii Gnatiuk via Bizjournals.com