Nursing homes sent a message

We’ve blogged before about cases of neglect and worse in nursing homes across the country. Recently a Kentucky family won $42.75 million in a lawsuit against a nursing home.

The lawsuit argued that severe neglect by the nursing home caused the death of the family’s 92-year-old father. The patient stayed at the nursing home for just nine days in the spring of 2008.

The family believes their father, Joseph Offutt, suffered from dehydration, malnutrition, infections, and bedsores, and their beliefs were supported by Adult Protective Services. Offutt was said to be in good health for his age. A stroke slowed him down in 2007, and his wife cared for him until the family decided he needed additional assistance.

The trial ran for three weeks, and the family was awarded $1 million for Offutt’s pain and suffering, $1.75 million for Offutt’s wife’s loss, and $40 million in punitive damages. The nursing home plans to appeal the decision.