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State Advocacy Group Files Lawsuit Against Nursing Home in Federal Court

A sudden death in a Michigan nursing home has sparked a statewide investigation with potentially significant consequences for the nursing home. The nursing home in question, Medilodge of Grand Blanc, has been providing long term skilled nursing care and short term rehabilitation services to the Eastern Michigan area for years. Recently, a male patient was found unresponsive, and investigators are wondering why.

The male resident, who has not been named in reports, was found unresponsive at Medilodge in late 2016. He was rushed to a nearby hospital where he was pronounced dead. The cause of death was not disclosed but is under heavy speculation. The suspicious circumstances surrounding the sudden death have led to an investigation by the Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service (MPAS). The MPAS is a state-appointed group assigned to investigate cases of abuse and neglect against the state’s disabled population.

MPAS also has the authority to file lawsuits on behalf of the state, which is precisely what was done in this case. The lawsuit filed by MPAS alleged that the deceased had physical and neurological disabilities and that he was not receiving adequate care in light of his circumstances. Lawyers for the group requested records from Medilodge in January 2017 but its request went unanswered. MPAS then, for the second time, requested records roughly two weeks later, also to no avail. After the second request, a lawyer for Medilodge stated he was in the process of complying with these requests but pleaded that he needed more time. The case is currently in the early stages of litigation.

These allegations against Medilodge may have come too little too late, unfortunately. A brief search of official reviews of the nursing home reveals a myriad of complaints and issues alleged by others. U.S. News ranked Medilodge 1 out of 5 stars after analyzing data from the federal government to arrive at their ratings. Specifically, Medilodge received a 1 out of 5 stars in medical care quality measures and health inspections and complaints. Further, this nursing home has paid three fines in the last three years totaling almost $40,000, and the facility was denied Medicare and Medicaid payments in 2013. Medilodge received over 20 complaints in 2015, nearly 4 times the national average.

Tennessee has organizations similar to MPAS fighting on behalf of disabled persons in the state. Disability Rights TN is headquartered in Nashville and provides representation, at no cost, to disabled persons within Tennessee. This organization has represented over 40,000 Tennesseans since it was founded in 1978.

Elder abuse and neglect affects thousands of Americans each year. In certain unfortunate circumstances, this abuse and neglect can lead to the death of a loved one. If you suspect neglect or abuse against an elderly adult in Tennessee, contact the proper authorities immediately. Early contact with police or an advocacy group could help save lives and bring justice against careless nursing homes. Depending on the facts of the case, it may be appropriate to file a lawsuit against the nursing home or long term care facility for wrongful death. To discuss your case with an experienced Tennessee nursing home abuse attorney, call Nahon, Saharovich & Trotz today at 1-800-529-4004.