Lawsuit Filed: Elderly Woman Contracts Sepsis and Pressure Sores at San Fernando Valley Nursing Facility

Van Nuys, Calif.— Rafat Majlesi who was insulin-diabetic, had a fractured hip, and was in a weakened state of health after gall bladder surgery, was allegedly abused and neglected by Lake Balboa Care Center, where she was admitted for treatment of pneumonia. It’s alleged that Lake Balboa Care Center neglected Majlesi, resulting in a severe fall, pressure sore development, sepsis and two strokes.

Garcia, Artigliere, Medby & Faulkner filed a lawsuit against Lake Balboa Care Center for elder abuse, and negligent hiring and supervision.

“The horrific injuries allegedly suffered by Rafat at the hands of Lake Balboa Care Center is yet another example of the inherently dangerous, yet all too common practice of understaffing and underfunding at a medical facility,” said Attorney Stephen Garcia. “Sadly, it appears from the available evidence that despite being fully aware of the comprehensive level of care that Rafat required, Lake Balboa Care Center clearly ignored her needs and withheld required care, which led to her life-threatening and potentially permanent injuries.”

Allegations and Background

In November 2016, Majlesi was admitted to Lake Balboa Care Center for rehabilitation after being treated for pneumonia. Upon admission, it is alleged that the facility was aware of her medical history, including her status as an insulin-dependent diabetic, who had previously broken her hip and had undergone gall bladder surgery that left her in a weakened condition.

Given her compromised health, the lawsuit states that upon her admission, the staff at Lake Balboa Care Center were aware of Majlesi’s likelihood to suffer from skin breakdown, as she needed assistance with all activities of daily living, including assistance with grooming and toileting.

Just weeks after her mother had been admitted to the facility, Majlesi’s daughter allegedly discovered a pressure sore on her mother’s tailbone. Not long after, the facility also called to inform her that her mother had fallen and injured herself.  According to the lawsuit, Majlesi told her daughter that she fell because the brake on her wheelchair did not work.

In January 2017, the lawsuit alleges that Majlesi’s neurologist informed her daughter that he did not believe the facility was properly administering Eliquis, an anti-stroke medication, since an MRI showed that Majlesi had suffered two strokes.

Later that month, Majlesi’s family visited and found her with a fever of more than 103 degrees. The family called 911 and had Majlesi taken to Northridge Hospital Emergency Room, where according to the lawsuit, it was determined that she was suffering from a UTI, an unstageable pressure sore, E. coli sepsis, deep tissue injuries to three toes, and skin tears on her arms, legs and knees.

The lawsuit states that as the direct result Lake Balboa Care Center’s negligence, Majlesi requires home health caregivers and IV fluids. She cannot eat or drink and is now bedridden.