Trial begins in wrongful death case against nursing home

By David Yates | Oct 15, 2012

A nursing home accused of being “too busy” to help a suffocating patient will defend its self in court this week.

As previously reported, Patsy Bushnell, on behalf of the late Pearl Green, filed suit against the Senior Rehabilitation and Skilled Nursing Center on Sept. 29, 2010, in Jefferson County District Court.

Two years later, jury selection in the case began Tuesday, Oct. 16, in Judge Bob Wortham’s 58th District Court.

The suit states that Green was admitted to the nursing center on June 20, 2008, with respiratory failure and pneumonia. A tracheostomy tube was in place to help her breathe.

Apparently, a nurse noticed she was having trouble breathing and that her trach tube needed to be suctioned. The nurse notified resident nurse Sherry Cole who allegedly told her she “was too busy,” court papers say.

“Green became unresponsive a short time later and was rushed to Southeast Texas Medical Center where she arrived in full cardiopulmonary arrest,” the suit states.

“Although Green was resuscitated, she had developed … brain damage due to lack of oxygen. As a result, the decision was made to withdraw life support and on July 27, 2008, Green died.”

Bushnell is suing for wrongful death damages and her mental anguish.

Houston attorney Craig Lewis represents her.

Victoria attorney Paul Swacina represents the defendant.

Case No. A188-464

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