Virginia: Patient Fall – a Lawyer’s Death

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On November 9, 2012, headlined: “Lawsuit filed in death of elderly Gloucester woman”. It reports the $4,450,000.00 medical malpractice suit filed by Mr. Waterman on November 5, 2012, Case No.: CL12000440-00 in Circuit Court for Gloucester County, Virginia, captioned Patrick Lee Cherrie, Administrator of the Estate of Gerda A Harvey, Deceased, v. Virginia Health Services, Inc., d/b/a Walter Reed Convalescent & Rehabilitation Center, Long Term Care of Tidewater, P.C. and Raina Winfrey, M.D.

The article recounts how the Defendants’ “high onto extreme” fall risk patient suffered a brain injury that proved to be fatal the 3rd time she fell in only 4 days. Defendants in Cherrie failed to give the victim the safety protection of a “bed alarm” – a highly effective pressure-sensitive system for beds and chairs – until after she suffered the fatal brain injury.

The Daily Press quoted Mr. Waterman, “It’s what they should have done previously, and not after the third [patient] fall.” Defendants in Cherrie also failed to move the victim closer to the nurse’s station after her 1st and 2nd falls.

The Daily Press notes that it was not able to get through to, or to hear back from, the corporate office of Virginia Health Services, Inc. for comment re its impending Cherrie newspaper coverage. Virginia Health Services is owner of the nursing home, Walter Reed Convalescent & Rehabilitation Services.

Defendants in the Cherrie wrongful death lawsuit have refused to turn over their complete incident reports for each of the 3 falls, providing only substantially redacted versions to the patient’s Estate Executor. Hence Mr. Waterman will issue a Subpoena Duces Tecum for the same, and seek enforcement vis-à-vis any “factual information of patient care” withheld by Virginia Health Services d/b/a Walter Reed.