Austin, Texas


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Brooks Schuelke
Brooks Schuelke
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Nursing Home Woes

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Today, there have been two recent blog posts on appalling cases of problems in nursing homes. First, Ed Normand has posted on a story of a nursing home patient who developed maggots in his eyes. Not to be outdone, Ray Mullman at the South Carolina Nursing Home Blog posts on a nursing home that hired a serial rapist as a nurse. Not surprisingly, the nurse ended up raping one of the residents.

I don’t know how the resulting lawsuits will turn out, but it saddens me to think how they might go in Texas. Because these would be considered medical malpractice cases, they would be governed by the caps on non-economic damages. Except for some likely minimal future medical expenses, both of these plaintiffs would be limited to a recovery of actual damages in the amount of $250,000.00. Even with these egregious facts, it might be difficult for the plaintiffs to find competent legal counsel.

And they are primary examples of how the damage caps have a disparate effect on those without earnings — the elderly and children — arguably the groups that need protecting the most.

For more information on this subject, please refer to the section on Nursing Home and Elder Abuse.