Alisa Loew, as administrator of the estate of her mother, Melvia Loew, is suing Heritage Enterprises for a judgment in excess of $50,000, alleging negligence, wrongful death, and violation of the state Nursing Home Act. According to the suit, Melvia Loew died July 11, 2016, at the age of 70 at Heritage Manor, Gillespie, after being admitted to the nursing facility earlier the same day.
Loew had been treated for a urinary tract infection from July 5, 2016, at St. Francis Hospital, Litchfield, under the care of Dr. Keith Cochran, the suit states. Though not named as defendants, both St. Francis Hospital and Dr. Cochran are named as respondents in discovery in connection with the lawsuit. The suit alleges Dr. Cochran released Lowe to be transferred to Heritage Manor on July 11 for physical and occupational therapy on the condition Heritage Manor could provide a special bed and oversized wheelchair for Loew’s use.
Before her death, Loew reportedly was five-feet, one-inch in height and weighed 336 pounds. Because of her size, she required a special bed and wheelchair, the suit alleges. The suit states that the plaintiff went to the nursing home about 6 p.m. on July 11 and found her mother “naked, angry, humiliated and in pain with her body hanging over both sides of the bed.”
Additionally, the suit alleges the plaintiff saw Loew’s food and food tray on the floor, along with her oxygen. The suit further alleges the call light was not within Loew’s reach, she had not been repositioned in more than five hours, she was soiled and a Hoyer sling remained under her. The suit claims Loew was soiled and that she had fresh bruises from her knee to her buttocks, as well as on her left arm, that were not present when she left the hospital.
Because she was placed in a bed too small for her size, the suit claims the side rails could not be raised, yet the nursing home staff did not place a sitter in the room to monitor Loew. Shortly before 10 p.m., according to the suit, the plaintiff received a phone call informing her that her mother had fallen out of bed and that EMTs were trying to resuscitate her. She died that evening, according to the suit.
The four-count lawsuit claims the defendant provided or administered negligent care, treatment, and improper equipment, causing Loew’s death.