Cedar Ridge named in suit over resident's death

Andrea Dearden Sep. 20, 2011, 6:31am


The wife of a man who allegedly died while living at a St. Clair County nursing home says the facility is to blame for his death.

Peggy Barnhart, on behalf of the estate of Samuel G. Barnhart Sr., filed a lawsuit in St. Clair County Circuit Court against Covenant Care Midwest Inc., doing business as Cedar Ridge Health & Rehab Center, Friendship Home and Highland Health Care Center. Covenant Care Inc., Covenant Care LLC, Centre Partners Management LLC, Covenant Care's Senior Management, Covenant Care California Inc. and Covenant Care California LLC are also named as defendants. The owners of Cedar Ridge Health, Robert Levin and Andrew F. Torok, are named defendants as well.

The lawsuit, filed July 8, was just recently made available.

According to the complaint, Samuel G. Barnhart was admitted to Cedar Ridge Health & Rehab Center in June 2009. Since the day he went to live at the facility, Barnhart's wife claims the staff was supposed to monitor the time it took her husband's blood to clot.

Nearly a month after moving to Cedar Ridge Health & Rehab, Peggy says the 53-year-old allegedly developed rectal bleeding. She contends the nursing staff failed to recognize and monitor the patient's condition. Peggy says the blood loss eventually led Samuel to have a fatal heart attack.

Peggy Barnhart accuses Cedar Ridge and its owners of violating Illinois' Nursing Home Care Act. She is suing for wrongful death and seeking more then $800,000 in damages plus the cost of the lawsuit.

Attorney David Sutterfield of Effingham is representing Barnhart. They ask for a jury trial.

St. Clair County Circuit Court Case No. 11-L-0397.

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