Iowa Jury Awards Family $491474.00 in Nursing Home Verdict
A Polk County jury has ordered the owners of a Grinnell nursing home to
pay almost half a million dollars to the estate of a man who died after
an accident at the facility.
The jury verdict is unusual in that
lawsuits against nursing homes are rare, partly because the elderly
victims of abuse or neglect have little life expectancy and no earnings
potential. That dramatically reduces any potential jury award, even in
cases of obvious neglect.
The accident at Grinnell’s Friendship
Manor Care Center occurred in June 2009. Wilbur Jackson, 89, a retired
farmer, had been at the facility for just 17 days. It was expected to be
a short-term stay, with Jackson receiving rehabilitation to help with a
surgically repaired hip.
After Jackson’s physician ordered tests at a nearby hospital, an
ambulance was summoned to Friendship Manor. A crew from Midwest
Ambulance Service of Iowa strapped Jackson to a gurney and wheeled him
from his room toward the facility’s driveway, where the ambulance was
parked. At the time, Jackson was alert and joking with the staff.
the gurney was moved outside the facility’s exit, one of its wheels
dropped into a crack in the walkway. The gurney flipped over, and
Jackson’s head struck the pavement. He lapsed into a coma and never
regained consciousness. He died on July 5, 2009, leaving behind his wife
of 64 years, Mabel Jackson.
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