Lawsuit Filed: Elderly Man Neglected and Robbed at Gardena Nursing Facility

Gardena, Calif. — Donald Brooks was placed in Las Flores Convalescent Hospital, a 24-hour skilled nursing facility, for rehabilitation. Unfortunately, it’s alleged that Las Flores Convalescent Hospital did not provide the necessary staff – in number or in training – to keep him safe from injuries, resulting in the development of painful and infected pressure sores.

Garcia, Artigliere, Medby & Faulkner filed a lawsuit against Las Flores Convalescent Hospital for elder abuse, and negligent hiring and supervision.

“Donald’s injuries should not, and in our judgement, would not have occurred had Las Flores Convalescent Hospital adhered to applicable rules, laws and regulations, as well as the acceptable standards of practice governing the operation of a nursing facility,” said Attorney Stephen Garcia. “These rules are put in place to ensure the health and safety of elder and infirm citizens in the State of California such as Donald. Sadly, his severe wounds were the knowing and predictable result of insufficient staff and care being provided to him by the facility.”

Allegations & Background

In 2015, Brooks became a resident at Las Flores Convalescent Hospital for rehabilitation and assistance with all of his activities of daily living. The facility received Brooks fully aware of his condition, knowing that his medical conditions rendered him susceptible to the development of pressure sores and infection. The lawsuit states that rather than providing the required care to address the conditions for which Brooks was transferred to the facility to address, Las Flores Convalescent Hospital and its staff utterly ignored his needs and withheld required care.

Brooks weighed more than 300 pounds, and suffered from an inability to be active as the result of his medical conditions. He required specific attention to prevent the formation of pressure sores, which the facility allegedly failed to prevent by not providing adequate and proper hygiene, failing to ensure he was repositioned, and failing to provide acceptable nutrition and hydration.

The lawsuit states that during one occasion, Brooks’ family questioned the staff about his dehydration, as each time he was hospitalized, he required intravenous fluids. Instead of offering Brooks water to quench his thirst, it appears the staff simply ignored him.

As Brooks deteriorated, his family requested that the facility get him up and out of bed.

The lawsuit states that instead of doing this, the facility told them that Brooks’ wheelchair was broken and as a result, for two weeks straight, Brooks remained in his bed. His condition continued to deteriorate to the point that he was unable to use his hands or feed himself. The lawsuit also states that Brooks could no longer use his call light to get help because the call button is usually out of his reach anyway.

In April 2015, the lawsuit alleges that money went missing from Brooks’ bank account. When confronted about the money, the facility staff accused his daughter and denied taking the money. After an investigation, Wells Fargo Bank determined through video surveillance that an employee of the facility was using Brook’s bank card and PIN to take money from his account. The lawsuit states that Brooks was reimbursed by Wells Fargo for $4,000.

Unfortunately, after this incident and investigation the facility staff began to retaliate against Brooks and treat him poorly. The lawsuit alleges that the facility provided Brooks with a bed that was too short for him, which resulted in a severe pressure sore on his heel and another sore on his tailbone.

The facility told Brooks’ daughter that the staff would not change his bandages, which led to an infection requiring debridement surgery. He also developed several urinary tract infections as a result of the facility’s failure to provide good catheter care.