Kathleen Menard was a 97-year-old matriarch whose family had entrusted her to the care of the Harbor Place assisted living facility in Port S. Lucie family, but her family says that nursing home neglect led to her eventual, painful death, and a Florida jury agreed, awarding them $6 million in compensation for the suffering she had to endure.
The wrongful death nursing home neglect lawsuit was filed less than two years after the woman had fallen from her electric scooter, which she’d taken for a ride on the assisted living facility’s property. According to testimony in the case, while sitting and reading on the vehicle she dropped the key and leaned over to pick it up, then lost her balance and fell to the ground. When she’d tried to summon help using a safety pendant the facility had given her, no help came. Her family says that the staff had never informed her that the pendant would not work from outside. She laid on the hot concrete under the Florida sun for hours before being found by the family member of another resident.
Nursing Home Neglect Leads to Burns, Heatstroke, and Eventual Death
In explaining how the nursing home’s neglect had led to Mrs. Menard’s death, a family representative pointed out that the staff had not only failed to account for the residents in their care, but also had not gone outside to look for her despite her history of being at risk for falling. At the time she fell the temperature outside was already 90 degrees, and by the time she was found hours later, she was unconscious and had suffered horrific burns and heat stroke. Her body temperature was measured at 105 degrees. She died 87 days later, and had told her family that she had “called and called for help and no one came to get her.” She required treatment for infection from the burns, as well as for the burns themselves and heatstroke, and suffered “horrific pain.”