The Denver Post reported another tragic and preventable death of a nursing home resident. Mary Staub froze to death on the sidewalk outside the nursing home. The temperature was around 15 degrees when the caregivers at Balfour at Lavendar Farms senior living facility in Louisville allowed Staub to leave unsupervised and unattended wearing a nightgown, robe, boots and gloves. Staub’s medical providers knew that she needed supervision and assistance at night for sleepwalking.
“When the door locked shut behind Mary Jo Staub, she used her walker to navigate the sidewalk until she ran into a 5-foot snowbank. There, she ditched the walker, climbed over the snow and crawled 75 feet on her hands and knees to a pair of French doors adjacent to a nurses’ station.”
She was 97 years old. Video recorded her collapsing outside at 1:40 a.m. and showed movement until 4:23 a.m. A staff member found her body at 5:51 a.m.
Staub’s death prompted no criminal charges or fines in relation to Staub’s wrongful death. The nursing home provided no additional training and took no disciplinary action.
“The surveillance shows she was exhausted, terrified and literally freezing,” the lawsuit states. “No one at Lavender Farms visited or walked to or past the nurses’ station or French doors between 12:18 a.m. and 5:51 a.m. No one at Lavender Farms was monitoring the security cameras that night. Not a single Balfour employee noticed Mary Jo was locked out of the facility. Not a single Balfour employee was present to help Mary Jo in any way. The Lavender Farms nurses’ station was empty for over five hours.”