Chicago nursing home patient dies after shirt catches fire

Chicago nursing homes can be rather expensive. However, for residents who wish to have the best care possible for their loved ones, the expense is a small price to pay. Sadly, some nursing homes do not live up to the desirable standards they are paid for.

That much can be said for one nursing home near Chicago. A patient in the nursing home was within the property’s designated smoking area on the patio when his shirt caught on fire from a lighter in his pocket. When other residents failed to put the fire out, the man wheeled himself inside the nursing home to get help. Inside, the staff sprayed him with a fire extinguisher. Afterwards, he was wheeled back to the patio and he was left there until an emergency response team arrived.

According to the family of the patient, he sustained burns from his eyebrows down to his thighs. An emergency response expert who saw the footage of the patient’s ordeal saw several errors that the staff made. For one, using a fire extinguisher on a person is a clear violation. The staff should have checked the patient’s airway and performed CPR as well. He also should have been covered with damp sheets to cool him down after the fire.

In response to this tragic situation, authorities have cited the nursing home for failing to properly train their staff about what to do in an emergency situation. The patient’s family has also filed a lawsuit against the nursing home.

In a Chicago nursing home neglect case such as this, a lawsuit is a justifiable course of action. Even the simplest form of nursing home abuse, such as bed sores, dehydration and malnutrition, should not be tolerated. After all, besides being paid to give much-needed patient care, nursing homes must also respect the rights of a patient.

Source: News Inferno, “Nursing Home Patient Catches Fire, Is Left To Burn On Patio,” F.A. Kelly, Oct. 03, 2013