How Much is a Nursing Home Bed Sore Case Worth?

by Jeffrey J. Downey, Esq.

When it comes to nursing home bed sore cases, determining their worth can be a complex process. The value of such cases depends on various factors, including the jurisdiction where the case is filed, the extent of neglect, the severity of the bed sores, and the resulting damages. In a wrongful death case, the nature of the family relationship between the decedent and the statutory beneficiaries (those who can pursue wrongful death claims under statute) can also be an important consideration impacting damages. It’s important to have your case handled and evaluated by an experienced bed sore attorney who knows how to prosecute such cases.

What are Bed Sores?

Bed sores, also known as pressure ulcers or decubitus ulcers, are skin injuries that occur when prolonged pressure or friction is applied to some regions of the body. They often develop in individuals who are bedridden, use wheelchairs or have limited mobility. Bed sores commonly form on bony areas such as the hips, heels, tailbone, and elbows.  Bed sores frequently arise when patients in nursing homes or assisted living facilities are not kept active or are not turned and repositioned.

These ulcers can range in severity from mild skin redness to deep wounds penetrating the muscle and bone. Bed sores are categorized into different stages based on severity, with Stage 1 being the mildest (red area on the skin) and Stage 4 being the most severe.

Bed sores are usually preventable with proper care and attention. Negligence on the part of the nursing home staff, such as failing to reposition residents regularly, not providing adequate nutrition and hygeiene, or ignoring signs of developing bed sores, can lead to their formation.  If not properly treated, bed sores can become infected, leading to sepsis and death.

Average Bed Sore Settlements and Verdicts

The average settlement or verdict amount in bed sore cases can vary significantly depending on several factors. These factors include the severity of the bed sores, the extent of the resulting injuries or complications, the duration of neglect, the impact on the victim’s quality of life, and the jurisdiction where the case is filed.

Bedsore cases have resulted in settlements and verdicts ranging from hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars. The specific amounts awarded in these cases depend on the unique circumstances and the strength of the evidence presented.   Some examples are set forth below:

  • In December of 2022 a Virginia resident was awarded 1.4 million for a bed sore that became infected and caused her death.
  • Musgrove v. Medical Facilities of America(Danville Virginia, 2007).  Plaintiff suffered from dehydration and pressure wounds.  The jury awarded $850,000 to the Plaintiff, who was represented by Virginia attorney Jeffrey J. Downey
  • Ballard v. Montgomery Healthcare facility.  Patient was a 55 year old woman who developed bed sores at a nursing home which went untreated until the woman developed sepsis.  She died from the pressure wounds and the jury awarded 2 million dollars.

What Sort of Damages are Recoverable in Pressure Sores Cases?

Victims of nursing home bed sores may be entitled to various types of damages, depending on the specifics of their case. The recoverable damages can include the following:

  • Economic damages: These encompass quantifiable financial losses, such as medical expenses, rehabilitation costs, and lost wages or income.
  • Non-economic damages: These include compensation for physical pain, emotional distress, suffering, and the loss of enjoyment of life.
  • Where the pressure wound causes death, the surviving family members may be entitled to loss of solace, companionship and affections.
  • Punitive damages: In cases involving particularly egregious behavior or neglect, punitive damages may be awarded as a form of punishment to deter similar actions in the future.
  • Preventable death damages: If a bed sore case results in the wrongful death of a loved one, additional damages may be recoverable for funeral expenses, loss of companionship, and the emotional impact on the surviving family members.

The damages awarded depend on various factors, including the severity of the bed sores, the impact on the victim’s life, and the jurisdiction where the case is litigated.

How Much Will the Jury Award in a Medical Malpractice Case?

The compensation in a jury awards in medical malpractice involving bed sores can vary significantly. Juries consider several factors when determining the appropriate compensation, including the severity of the bed sores, the extent of neglect, the impact on the victim’s quality of life, and the strength of the evidence presented.  The jurisdiction where the case is located can also influence the jury’s award.

While it is impossible to predict the exact amount a jury will award, presenting a compelling case with strong evidence and persuasive arguments is essential. This is where the expertise of a skilled bed sore attorney becomes invaluable. An experienced attorney will thoroughly analyze the details of your case, gather evidence, and craft a persuasive argument to maximize your chances of receiving fair compensation.

If you or your loved one has suffered from bed sores due to nursing home neglect, don’t hesitate to contact the Law Office of Jeffrey J. Downey for a free consultation.  Mr. Downey has over 30 years of experience handling malpractice cases and regularly handles pressure wound cases.  His firm will assess the details of your case and provide you with the legal guidance and support you need to seek justice and hold the responsible parties accountable.

Contact us for a free consulation:

The Law Office of Jeffrey J. Downey, P.C.
McLean Virginia Office
8270 Greensboro Drive, Suite 810
McLean, VA 22102
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Phone: 703-564-7318
Fax: 703-556-7700