The Ledger reported that a Polk County jury awarded $2,118,000 to Sidney Gilmore. Gilmore was a nursing home resident at Oak Haven Rehab and Nursing Center. The jury blamed the nursing home for allowing or causing Gilmore to develop an infected pressure injury. Oak Haven neglected to turn and reposition or relieve the painful pressure. The pressure injury developed into a Stage IV sacral pressure ulcer. The wound was so deep it infected his bone.

Pressure Injury Stages - National Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel

The jury decided on April 28 that the nursing home should compensate Gilmore for his suffering and the related medical bills. The infected and avoidable pressure injury led to six surgeries to remove the infected tissue and bone. He also had to have a colostomy as a result of the pressure injury.

“Mr. Gilmore required frequent and involved care that Oak Haven did not adequately provide. While we routinely see horrifying cases in Florida nursing homes, this one is particularly tragic. Mr. Gilmore was born with a mental disability and faced the cruel injustices of needless pain, suffering and permanent injury through no fault of his own.”

Pressure injuries, also known as pressure ulcers or bed sores, form from unrelieved pressure on skin. The injuries develop because blood circulation to the body’s soft tissues is cut off. Mobility issues and lack of movement are known risks.  The nursing home knew or should have known how to prevent or treat the pressure wounds.