A Otero County District Court jury has awarded a $3.2 million verdict against Pioneer Healthcare for the family of Henry Frazier who suffered and died from 16-facility acquired infections and what experts called 34 “appalling” injuries, including a stage 4 gaping bedsore that spread across his buttocks and into his scrotum, the Denver Post reported. An expert witness hired by the plaintiffs said that her review of the nursing home charts found that “the care provided to Mr. Frazier fell far below the standard of nursing care and wound care.”
Even though Stage 4 bedsores are considered by national safety panels to be extreme events, inline with amputation of the wrong limb or patients electrocution, the state’s review of the Frazier case led to no penalties, citations, or consequences.
“The allegation of the facility failing to properly assess or treat a resident who was at risk for pressure sores was substantiated, the facility was not cited with deficient practice because the investigation did not substantiate current deficient practice,” the state’s investigation summary stated.
State investigators for Medicare also found no cause to pursue action against the nursing home, however, they did place a lien for thousands of dollars against the jury award for the wound care it paid for Frazier’s grievous wounds.