A jury has awarded $5.4 Million dollars to Robert Messina, a resident of Staten Island. The verdict stems from Messina’s development of pressure ulcers during several stays between Staten Island University Hospital and Golden Gate Rehabilitation and Health Care Center between 2006 and 2007. The jury found SIUH 75% responsible, and Golden Gate 25% responsible. Messina has been restricted to using a wheelchair for the past five years, his confinement the result of bedsores that led to a bone infection in his hip. According to his attorney, Mitchel Ashley, Mr. Messina had no skin breakdown at the time of his first admittance to SIUH. Regardless of fault, the debilitating effects of the bedsores have proven to be a significant hinderance to Mr. Messina’s quality of life, and certainly that played a part in the jury returning such a substantial verdict.
Additional medical conditions suffered by Mr. Messina (found in the article linked below) put Mr. Messina at risk for the development of bedsores. In our view, the presence of underlying conditions that put Mr. Messina at risk should have made the facilities more vigilant with respect to the assessment, care planning and implementation of appropriate interventions to prevent the development of ulcers. Despite the underlying conditions, the jury found that SIUH did not provide the requisite level of due care guaranteed as a patient right. Whatever the result of the appeal, hopefully Mr. Messina can return to some level of normalcy in his daily life, and avoid future health complications resulting from these incidents.
Website Resource: $5.4M medical malpractice award for Staten Island man