Nursing home's parent company might face vicarious liability after appeals court decision
A Pennsylvania man is set to get a new trial after a three-judge Superior Court panel unanimously overturned a lower court’s decision that dismissed his lawsuit against a nursing home's parent company. The court ruled that a jury should decide if Grane Healthcare, parent company of the Highland Park Care Center in Pittsburgh, should be held vicariously liable in a long-running lawsuit over the treatment of Madeline Scampone.
Richard Scampone brought the original suit on behalf of his mother, Madeline Scampone, and alleged her death was a result of substandard care from Highlands Park Care Center. Madeline died at age 94 after being diagnosed with a urinary tract infection, dehydration, malnutrition and bed sores. W&M attorney Stephen Trzcinski has been handling the case, Scampone v. Highland Park Care Center, and its subsequent appeals.
In its ruling, the court decided Grane Healthcare could be found negligent in allowing the facility to be consistently understaffed, noting also that the trial court erred in granting Grane's motion for nonsuit. An Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas might now decide the issue while also exploring punitive damages against Highland Park.