Madison - St. Clair Record

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Father alleges Atrium Health Care mishandled daughter's medical condition

By Molly English-Bowers | Feb 10, 2016

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BELLEVILLE – The father of a disabled woman is suing a Cahokia health facility, alleging poor medical care led to her hospitalization. 

Joyce Gummersheimer, by and through her father, next friend and guardian, Willard Gummersheimer, filed a lawsuit Jan. 28 against Atrium Health Care & Rehabilitation Center of Cahokia LLC, alleging negligence and violations of the Nursing Home Reform Act.

According to the complaint, since Feb. 4, 2014, Joyce Gummersheimer has been mentally disabled in that she cannot manage herself or her financial affairs or the nature and extent of her personal and property rights. She is also diabetic.  

The suit alleges the defendant's nursing personnel failed to continuously monitor the plaintiff and failed to get her out of bed all day and did not give her breakfast or lunch, failed to assess the plaintiff when she was found to have a dangerously low blood glucose level and did not communicate change in her behavior to either the plaintiff's designated health care representative or physician.

As a result, the suit alleges, Gummersheimer became severely hypoglycemic, lost consciousness, became unresponsive, developed brain injuries and became bedridden, among other conditions. On Nov. 26, 2014, the plaintiff was diagnosed with pneumonia, the suit states, and was hospitalized Dec. 21, 2014 before developing further medical complications.

The plaintiff has sustained permanent injuries, permanent disability and medical expenses, the suit says.

Willard and Joyce Gummersheimer seek a trial by jury, a $75,000 judgment on both counts, attorney fees and court costs. They are represented by attorney Ross T. Anderson of Ross Anderson Law Offices in St. Louis.

St. Clair County Circuit Court case number 16-L-52

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