After what one upstate nursing home doctor called the “worst bedsore ever seen” killed a once-healthy resident, the elderly man’s son is demanding accountability from the negligent nursing home. Four months after entering Safire Rehabilitation of Northtowns, the 82-year-old Frank L. Williams passed away from an entirely preventable bedsore, also called a pressure ulcer. According to The Buffalo News, Williams’ hospital records list cardiac arrest caused by sepsis, a deadly infection resulting from his bedsores, as the cause of death. According to the New York Department of Health, the number of residents developing bedsores at Safire Rehabilitation is almost double the state average. In the last few years, the number of bedsores has increased at the nursing home.
Speaking to The Buffalo News, Williams son describes his father’s experience at Safire Rehabilitation as a nightmare from the beginning. After suffering a stroke, Williams was released by the local hospital to Safire Rehabilitation. The nursing home apparently accepted the elderly man without having space to treat him, which caused him to spend his first three days in long-term care instead of the rehabilitation unit. Williams son describes the nursing home as windowless and reeking of urine. The nursing staff ignored his father’s pleas to move him around, necessary to prevent a bedsore from developing. After spending three months at Safire Rehabilitation, Williams doctors told his son there was a “little pressure sore” and refused to let the son see the wound.
Williams health rapidly deteriorated in the following days and he was readmitted to the local hospital. The doctors at the hospital said there was not a “little pressure ulcer” but, instead, the lower half of his father’s body was covered in advanced-stage bedsores. The doctors took Williams into surgery and removed dead tissue and muscle from his “lower back, scrotum, and ankle,” according to medical records.
The Buffalo News reports that there was so much dead tissue removed from his rectal area that a colostomy bag was required. Despite the doctors’ best efforts, Williams passed away a couple weeks after the surgery from a deadly infection caused by his bedsores. Speaking to the newspaper, Williams’ son said, “I arrived at the hospital a few seconds after he died. The nurses told me he had smiled when he died. He finally had relief.”
Contact Gallivan & Gallivan if you or a loved one has suffered due to bedsores.