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Home Attendant Negligence


Home attendant negligently fills hot water bottle with boiling water and has elderly arthritis patient lean back against rubber – Bottle breaks and causes 1st and 2nd degree burns to buttocks and perineum of elderly patient – Incident allegedly causes death several months later after painful recuperation.

Kings County, NY

This case involved a 69-year-old patient in whose apartment the defendant’s home health attendant was working. The patient had a history of severe arthritis, and the plaintiff contended that although the hot water bottle was clearly labeled as being appropriate for tap water only, the defendant’s employee negligently filled it with boiling water and had the patient lean back against it. The rubber broke, and the plaintiff maintained that the patient sustained severe burns to the buttock and perineum. The severe pain triggered acute respiratory distress requiring intubation at the hospital later that day. The plaintiff contended that burn caused acute respiratory distress, intubation, tracheomalacia, contracture of pneumonia, sepsis and ultimately death eight months later. Plaintiff was confined to hospitals and rehabilitation centers from the date of the accident until her death. The defendant denied that the death was occasioned by the patient’s injuries. The parties reached a mediated settlement of $750,000. REFERENCE Attorney for plaintiff: Victoria Wickman of Law Office of Victoria Wickman in New York, NY.