Medication Errors In Nursing Homes

Among the many potential issues with regard to nursing home care remains that of medications.  There are many potentially problematic issues, including those of prescription errors, improper medication administration, and overdosing.  As well, for some drugs there is the threat of “drug diversion,” where the nursing home staff may steal the prescription, either for their own usage or for reselling the drugs.

Various aspects of these “medication” issues are further discussed on the “Nursing Home Medication Problems” page.  As well, posts concerning medication problems and their consequences can be found under the “medications” category.

A September 2, 2017 article in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch (“Robert Behr got the wrong medicine at a Florissant nursing home.  Then he died.”) tells of an alleged medication error involving a nursing home resident.  The resident died, and a wrongful death lawsuit has been filed regarding the incident.

An excerpt regarding the medication incident, from the article:

A drug mix-up at a Florissant nursing home led to the death of a 72-year-old man who was given another resident’s medication, federal investigators found.

Robert L. Baehr died in November 2015 of low blood sugar about two weeks after nurses at Bent-Wood Nursing and Rehab Center mistakenly gave him a prescription drug used to treat diabetes, which Baehr did not have.

The drug was intended for another resident of the nursing home, and a nurse mixed up their records, according to an investigation by the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Baehr also received one dose of an antibiotic and four doses of a drug to lower blood pressure that he was not prescribed, the investigative report shows.

Additional details regarding these problematical medication issues can be seen in the sources mentioned above.

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Should you or someone you care for experience Illinois nursing home abuse or neglect – or a nursing home accident – please contact the nursing home abuse and neglect lawyers at the Elman Law Group to discuss the situation and to see what legal remedies may exist.

Elman Law Group is a personal injury law firm based in Chicago, and we have handled over 10,000 personal injury lawsuits over the last 25+ years.   We are known for our courtroom trial capabilities.  This is important for your lawsuit because if an attractive lawsuit settlement is not offered, we have a proven track record of achieving attractive courtroom verdicts.

In fact, because of this court trial capability, many well-known law firms choose to have Elman Law Group take cases to court. 

To immediately speak directly to Tony Elman, Lead Attorney of the Elman Law Group, call (773) 392-8182 at any time.  There is no fee for this legal consultation.  

Elman Law Group, LLC handles Chicago area and other Illinois personal injury lawsuits as well as wrongful death lawsuits.

Wrongful Death Lawsuit Claims Negligence Involving Medication

Medication problems in nursing homes continues to be a major recurring issue.  On this site, various aspects of the issue is discussed on the “Nursing Home Medication Problems” page.  Additionally, posts concerning medication problems (including prescription errors, drug diversion, overprescription, improper drug administration, and related issues) can be seen in the “medications” category.

As seen in the material mentioned above, there are a range of issues and potentially problematical issues with regard to drug prescriptions and drug administration in nursing homes.   Many of the problems – which often include errors – are due to poor training of nursing home staff and/or poor operating procedures.  As often the drugs involved are powerful, many of the medication errors have resulted in the death of nursing home residents.  Following these deaths, wrongful death lawsuits are often filed.

One such medication error, that allegedly led to the death of a nursing home resident, is discussed in the Cook County Record article of October 7, 2016, titled “Holland Home accused of negligence in alleged wrongful death.”  An excerpt from the article:

According to the complaint, the plaintiff alleges that Rundin was overdosed with narcotic pain medication that contributed to and/or caused his death. The plaintiff holds the defendants responsible for allegedly administering pain medications to Rundin even though those medications were not prescribed.

Additional details concerning medication errors can be seen in the sources mentioned above.

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Should you or someone you care for experience Illinois nursing home abuse or neglect – or a nursing home accident – please contact the nursing home abuse and neglect lawyers at the Elman Law Group to discuss the situation and to see what legal remedies may exist.

Elman Law Group is a personal injury law firm based in Chicago, and we have handled over 10,000 personal injury lawsuits over the last 25+ years.   We are known for our courtroom trial capabilities.  This is important for your lawsuit because if an attractive lawsuit settlement is not offered, we have a proven track record of achieving attractive courtroom verdicts.

In fact, because of this court trial capability, many well-known law firms choose to have Elman Law Group take cases to court. 

To immediately speak directly to Tony Elman, Lead Attorney of the Elman Law Group, call (773) 392-8182 at any time.  There is no fee for this legal consultation.  

Elman Law Group, LLC handles Chicago area and other Illinois personal injury lawsuits as well as wrongful death lawsuits.

Theft Of Nursing Home Drugs

Medications and prescriptions for use in Illinois nursing homes (as well as other health care facilities such as assisted living facilities) is often an area of concern.  Medications can be improperly prescribed, improperly administered, or otherwise misapplied for a variety of reasons.

One recurring issue with regard to drugs and prescriptions intended for nursing home residents is whether those drugs actually are used by the intended patients, i.e. the nursing home resident.

Drug “diversion” and theft occurs when nursing home personnel steal or otherwise divert drugs.  While this theft can occur for a number of reasons, two prominent reasons include reselling the drugs – which can be (highly) profitable – as well as illegal use of the drugs by the nursing home personnel.

The nursing home resident for whom the drugs were intended often suffers either through an adverse health impact and/or increased pain due to the withholding of prescriptions.

An example of alleged theft of drugs from a nursing home is seen in the September 3, 2015 al.com article titled “Nurse accused of stealing 1,800 hydrocodone pills from Birmingham nursing home.”

Two excerpts from the article:

A former director of nursing of a Birmingham-area nursing home was arrested Thursday accused of stealing more than 1,800 hydrocodone pills.

also:

The theft was discovered when staff reported that the medications weren’t logged correctly. An audit revealed more than 1,800 hydrocodone pills were missing.

Additional details and possible updates can be seen in the al.com article mentioned above, as well as the September 7 McKnight’s article titled “Former director of nursing accused of stealing 1,800 hydrocodone pills.”

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Should someone you care for experience Illinois nursing home abuse or neglect or a nursing home accident – or suffer an injury at a similar health care facility such as an assisted living facility, retirement home, skilled nursing facility (SNF) or hospital – please contact the Elman Law Group at (773) 392-8182 to discuss the situation and to see if filing an injury lawsuit is warranted.  This no-obligation legal consultation is free and confidential.   

Elman Law Group’s Lead Attorney, Tony Elman, is a personal injury trial lawyer.  Over the last 20+ years Elman Law Group has handled over 10,000 Illinois personal injury lawsuits.

During this 20+ year period, Elman Law Group has built a reputation for its courtroom trial performance, including getting large verdicts for smaller cases.

To speak directly to Tony Elman, Lead Attorney of the Elman Law Group, call (773) 392-8182 at any time.  This legal consultation is free and confidential.   Elman Law Group works on a “contingency” basis…Elman Law Group’s clients never pay a fee unless and until they receive monetary compensation. 

Elman Law Group, LLC handles Chicago area and other Illinois personal injury lawsuits as well as wrongful death lawsuits.

Theft Of Nursing Home Residents’ Drugs

Medications and prescriptions administered within Illinois nursing homes, as well as other nursing homes on a national basis, is often an area of concern.  This is because in many cases, medications are either not correctly prescribed or administered, which can lead to a variety of health hazards and/or nursing home residents experiencing pain or discomfort that they shouldn’t be subjected to.

Another area of concern is when drugs meant for nursing home residents are diverted by the staff of the nursing home for their own uses.  Often, this theft of residents’ prescriptions is either for the use by the staff, or the staff may find it lucrative to resell the stolen drugs.

The post of February 6, 2014, titled “Stolen And Diverted Nursing Home Medications” highlighted one incident in which a nurse was charged with stealing drugs.

Recently, another incident involving alleged theft of drugs has occurred in a Wisconsin nursing home.  In this instance, a nurse in a nursing home, Angela J. Dixon, 35, is expected to be charged for stealing medications for her own personal use.

The August 21, 2015 Leader-Telegram article, titled “Nursing home nurse reportedly stole medications from patients” details the allegations.  As well, the August 20, 2015 weau.com article titled “Nurse accused of stealing prescription medicine” also discusses the subject.

Two excerpts from the Leader-Telegram article:

Angela J. Dixon, 35, told police that she stole medications for patients at the Ladysmith Nursing Home for her personal use over the past three months and replaced those medications with over-the-counter drugs or water pills, according to court records.

also:

Dixon told police she took 12 oxycodone tablets from patients’ pill containers during that shift, replacing them with anti-nausea and water pills. She said she also had stolen unknown amounts of vicodin and tramadol, pain relievers, during the same several months, replacing them with Tylenol and melatonin, a sleep medication, because she is addicted to pain medications.

Additional details can be found in the two media sources mentioned above.

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Should someone you care for experience Illinois nursing home abuse or neglect or a nursing home accident – or suffer an injury at a similar health care facility such as an assisted living facility, retirement home, skilled nursing facility (SNF) or hospital – please contact the Elman Law Group at (773) 392-8182 to discuss the situation and to see if filing an injury lawsuit is warranted.  This no-obligation legal consultation is free and confidential.   

Elman Law Group’s Lead Attorney, Tony Elman, is a personal injury trial lawyer.  Over the last 20+ years Elman Law Group has handled over 10,000 Illinois personal injury lawsuits.

During this 20+ year period, Elman Law Group has built a reputation for its courtroom trial performance, including getting large verdicts for smaller cases.

To speak directly to Tony Elman, Lead Attorney of the Elman Law Group, call (773) 392-8182 at any time.  This legal consultation is free and confidential.   Elman Law Group works on a “contingency” basis…Elman Law Group’s clients never pay a fee unless and until they receive monetary compensation. 

Elman Law Group, LLC handles Chicago area and other Illinois personal injury lawsuits as well as wrongful death lawsuits.

Deaths Of South Holland Assisted Living Residents Under Investigation

A death of a South Holland assisted living facility (Holland Home) resident has been ruled a homicide by the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office.  Toxic levels of two painkilling drugs are reported to have contributed to the death of the 98-year-old resident, Dorothy Byrd.

Byrd was among six residents at Holland Home who were hospitalized on February 3, 2015 after the residents experienced respiratory and blood pressure issues.

Of the six residents, two other residents who were hospitalized have also died earlier this month.  Those residents have been identified by South Holland Police as Robert Rundin, 88, and Leon Krynicki, 98.

An excerpt from the March 18, 2015 Daily Southtown (Chicago Tribune) article titled “South Holland assisted living facility resident’s death ruled a homicide; two others also have died“:

Police opened an investigation of the incident after Byrd died. Byrd’s death was caused by morphine and hydrocodone toxicity, combined with hypertensive and atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease, according to Cook County medical examiner’s office spokesman Frank Shuftan.

The deaths remain under investigation.

Additional details and possible updates concerning these deaths of Illinois assisted living facility residents can be seen in a variety of media sources, including the Chicago Tribune article mentioned above, as well as the March 17 McKnight’s article titled “Homicide charges follow sudden illness of six assisted living residents.”

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Should someone you care for experience Illinois nursing home abuse or neglect or a nursing home accident – or suffer an injury at a similar health care facility such as an assisted living facility, retirement home, skilled nursing facility (SNF) or hospital – please contact the Elman Law Group at (773) 392-8182 to discuss the situation and to see if filing an injury lawsuit is warranted.  This no-obligation legal consultation is free and confidential.   

Elman Law Group’s Lead Attorney, Tony Elman, is a personal injury trial lawyer.  Over the last 20+ years Elman Law Group has handled over 10,000 Illinois personal injury lawsuits.

During this 20+ year period, Elman Law Group has built a reputation for its courtroom trial performance, including getting large verdicts for smaller cases.

To speak directly to Tony Elman, Lead Attorney of the Elman Law Group, call (773) 392-8182 at any time.  This legal consultation is free and confidential.   Elman Law Group works on a “contingency” basis…Elman Law Group’s clients never pay a fee unless and until they receive monetary compensation. 

Elman Law Group, LLC handles Chicago area and other Illinois personal injury lawsuits as well as wrongful death lawsuits.

Nursing Home Wrongful Death Lawsuit Involving Medications

Medications administered in health care facilities (including nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and hospitals) continues to be an important topic.  In particular, the use – and appropriateness – of antipsychotic medications has become a controversial issue, particularly since many of the antipsychotic medicines are powerful and can have side-effects.  (other posts concerning nursing home medication issues are seen in the “medications” category)

A recent wrongful death lawsuit filed in Tennessee against a nursing home highlights claims regarding inappropriate use of antipsychotic and psychotropic medications.

The lawsuit is described in the January 16, 2015 Greeneville Sun article titled “Life Care Of Greeneville Named In Wrongful Death Lawsuit.” (the lawsuit is seen at aarp.org (pdf))

Two excerpts from the article:

The suit alleges that, for a few days in August 2013 at Takoma Regional Hospital and then continuing until mid-October 2013 at Life Care Center of Greeneville, Tweed was administered powerful drugs that were inappropriate for his medical condition: dementia and Alzheimer’s disease (but not mental illness).

The drugs mentioned in the lawsuit — Seroquel, Geodon and Depakote — are described in the suit as “extremely powerful psychotropic medications” classified as “atypical anti-psychotic drugs.”

Seroquel and Geodon, the suit alleges, “and other atypical anti-psychotic drugs” have been shown to increase death in elderly patients who are suffering from dementia.

also:

The lawsuit summarizes at one point: ” … the defendant failed to obtain informed consent for the treatment of [Keller’s] father and deviated from the standard of care in providing medical treatment while he was under their care.

“As a direct and proximate result of defendants’ acts and omissions, Mr. Tweed suffered serious and debiliating harm and injuries, ultimately resulting in death.”

Additional details and possible updates can be seen in a variety of media sources, including the Greeneville Sun article mentioned above.

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Should you or someone you care for experience Illinois nursing home abuse or neglect – or a nursing home accident – please contact the Elman Law Group to discuss the situation and to see what legal remedies may exist.

Elman Law Group is a personal injury law firm based in Chicago, and is known for its courtroom trial capabilities.  This is important for your lawsuit because if an attractive lawsuit settlement is not offered, we have a proven track record of achieving attractive courtroom verdicts.

In fact, because of this court trial capability, many well-known law firms choose to have Elman Law Group litigate cases. 

To immediately speak directly to Tony Elman, Lead Attorney of the Elman Law Group, call (773) 392-8182 at any time.  There is no fee for this legal consultation.  

Elman Law Group, LLC handles Chicago area and other Illinois personal injury lawsuits as well as wrongful death lawsuits.

Illinois Lawsuit Filed Over Care Received At Illinois Hospital

Medications administered in health care facilities (including hospitals, nursing homes, assisted living facilities and hospices) has become an important topic, for a number of reasons.  The appropriateness of such medications, as well as how – and if – they are appropriately administered – are two topics that are of primary concern with regard to health care.

There has been an Illinois personal injury lawsuit filed regarding the hospital treatment received by a patient, James Charnas, at Alton Memorial Hospital.

The lawsuit and alleged underlying harm is discussed in at least two articles, including the January 5, 2015 thetelegraph.com article titled “Lawsuit filed against Alton Memorial” as well as the December 23, 2014 Madison Record article titled “Woman alleges husband suffered disability after receiving intravenous medication.”

Two excerpts from thetelegraph.com article mentioned above:

The estate of a former patient of Alton Memorial Hospital has filed suit in circuit court, claiming the hospital’s handling of a powerful narcotic pain medication has resulted in the need for around-the-clock nursing home care.

also:

The suit claims the hospital was negligent for failing to properly monitor the patient, failing to order the proper monitoring while receiving Dilaudid, failing to take his vital signs between 10 p.m. Jan. 17 and 6 a.m. Jan. 18, 2013, failing to discuss admission to the ICU with the patient’s attending physician and failing to properly program the pump that administers the medication.

Additional details can be seen in a variety of media sources, including two articles mentioned above.

_____

Should you or someone you care for experience Illinois nursing home abuse or neglect – or a nursing home accident – please contact the Elman Law Group to discuss the situation and to see what legal remedies may exist.

Elman Law Group is a personal injury law firm based in Chicago, and is known for its courtroom trial capabilities.  This is important for your lawsuit because if an attractive lawsuit settlement is not offered, we have a proven track record of achieving attractive courtroom verdicts.

In fact, because of this court trial capability, many well-known law firms choose to have Elman Law Group litigate cases. 

To immediately speak directly to Tony Elman, Lead Attorney of the Elman Law Group, call (773) 392-8182 at any time.  There is no fee for this legal consultation.  

Elman Law Group, LLC handles Chicago area and other Illinois personal injury lawsuits as well as wrongful death lawsuits.

Antipsychotic Drug Use In Nursing Homes

The use of antipsychotic medications in nursing home residents is an important topic, especially in cases where it is unnecessary and/or inappropriate.

The National Partnership to Improve Dementia Care in Nursing Homes (pdf) intiative began in 2012 to reduce the inappropriate use of antipsychotic medications.

Recently, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has released the latest quarterly statistics regarding the use of antipsychotics in nursing home residents. (pdf)

As seen in the document:

The National Partnership to Improve Dementia Care in Nursing Homes is committed to improving the quality of care for individuals with dementia living in nursing homes. The Partnership has a mission to deliver health care that is person-centered, comprehensive and interdisciplinary with a specific focus on protecting residents from being prescribed antipsychotic medications unless there is a valid, clinical indication and a systematic process to evaluate each individual’s need.

also:

CMS is tracking the progress of the Partnership by reviewing publicly reported measures. The official measure of the Partnership isthe percent of long-stay nursing home residents who are receiving an antipsychotic medication, excluding those residents diagnosed with schizophrenia, Huntington’s Disease or Tourette’s Syndrome. In 2011Q4 23.9% of long-stay nursing home residentswere receiving an antipsychotic medication; since then there has been a decrease of 18.8% to a national prevalence of 19.4% in 2014Q2. Success has varied by state and CMS region, with some states and regions having seen a reduction of greater than 20%.

The CMS report menitoned above, in addition to showing quarterly national trends, also provides the trends by state.  For Illinois nursing home residents antipsychotic drug use is seen at 23.7% in the second quarter of 2014, compared with 26.0% in the second quarter of 2012, the earliest statistic available in the report.

Additional details can be found in the CMS report mentioned above.

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Should you or someone you care for experience Illinois nursing home abuse or neglect – or a nursing home accident – please contact the Elman Law Group to discuss the situation and to see what legal remedies may exist.

Elman Law Group is a personal injury law firm based in Chicago, and is known for its courtroom trial capabilities.  This is important for your lawsuit because if an attractive lawsuit settlement is not offered, we have a proven track record of achieving attractive courtroom verdicts.

In fact, because of this court trial capability, many well-known law firms choose to have Elman Law Group litigate cases. 

To immediately speak directly to Tony Elman, Lead Attorney of the Elman Law Group, call (773) 392-8182 at any time.  There is no fee for this legal consultation.  

Elman Law Group, LLC handles Chicago area and other Illinois personal injury lawsuits as well as wrongful death lawsuits.

“High-Risk” Medication Use Following Hospital Stays

The medications and prescriptions administered within Illinois nursing homes, as well as nationally, is an area of concern for many different reasons.  Among these reasons include concerns over proper dosages, proper drug administration, and appropriate medications for nursing home residents.  (Other posts regarding nursing home medication issues can be seen in the medications category.)

Recently, there has been a study with regard to “high-risk” medication use for nursing home residents who return to the nursing home following a hospital stay.  This study indicates cause for concern with regard to administration of these medications in the post-hospital stay instances.

The study and its findings is discussed in the September 12, 2014 McKnight’s article titled “Nursing homes tend to administer high-risk medications to returning residents, study shows” as well as the October 2014 Medical Care abstract titled “High-Risk Medication Use by Nursing Home Residents Before and After Hospitalization.”

_____

Should you or someone you care for experience Illinois nursing home abuse or neglect – or a nursing home accident – please contact the Elman Law Group to discuss the situation and to see what legal remedies may exist.

Elman Law Group is a personal injury law firm based in Chicago, and is known for its litigation (court trial) capabilities.  This is important for your lawsuit because if we are unable to attain an appropriate settlement, we have a proven track record of achieving highly attractive court verdicts.

In fact, because of this litigation capability, many well-known law firms choose to have Elman Law Group litigate cases. 

To immediately speak directly to Tony Elman, Lead Attorney of the Elman Law Group, call (773) 392-8182 at any time.  There is no fee for this legal consultation.  

Elman Law Group, LLC handles Chicago area and other Illinois personal injury lawsuits as well as wrongful death lawsuits.

Overprescriptions Of Medications To Illinois Nursing Home Residents

Nursing home medications and their appropriateness (both in the medications administered as well as the dosages received) is a topic that has received a considerable amount of attention.  Many people believe that antipsychotic drugs are among the drugs that are overprescribed.

A recent news item concerning a Chicago psychiatrist, Dr. Michael Reinstein, and his prescriptions to Illinois nursing home residents is noteworthy in this regard.

According to news reports, the Illinois’ Department of Financial and Professional Regulation has indefinitely suspended Reinstein’s license.

An excerpt from the Chicago Tribune article of August 11, 2014, titled “Illinois suspends license of controversial psychiatrist“:

For years, Dr. Michael Reinstein was a prolific prescriber of a dangerous antipsychotic drug in nursing homes and mental health facilities, giving it to more than 50 percent of the patients under his care.

The psychiatrist’s prescriptions of clozapine, known as a risky drug of last resort, were linked to three patients’ deaths and triggered federal accusations of kickbacks and fraud.

Additional details concerning this alleged Illinois nursing home overprescription issue can be seen in a variety of media sources, including the Chicago Tribune article mentioned above, as well as the Propublica.org article of August 11 titled “Illinois Suspends Medical License of Leading Prescriber of Antipsychotic Drugs” as well as the August 12 McKnight’s article titled “Doctor accused of vastly overprescribing antipsychotic to nursing home residents loses license.”

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Should you or someone you care for experience Illinois nursing home abuse or neglect – or a nursing home accident – please contact the Elman Law Group to discuss the situation and to see what legal remedies may exist.

Elman Law Group is a personal injury law firm based in Chicago, and is known for its litigation (court trial) capabilities.  This is important for your lawsuit because if we are unable to attain an appropriate settlement, we have a proven track record of achieving highly attractive court verdicts.

In fact, because of this litigation capability, many well-known law firms choose to have Elman Law Group litigate cases. 

To immediately speak directly to Tony Elman, Lead Attorney of the Elman Law Group, call (773) 392-8182 at any time.  There is no fee for this legal consultation.  

Elman Law Group, LLC handles Chicago area and other Illinois personal injury lawsuits as well as wrongful death lawsuits.