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Lack of Mealtime Assistance Blamed in Choking Death at Nursing Home

A Minnesota nursing home is being blamed in the choking death of a resident after it was discovered that he was not supervised while eating, according to an article on AustinDailyHerald.com.

In the article, a Minnesota Department of Health report said the resident was found choking in his room with no staff present. However, the man’s medical record noted that he had aspiration pneumonia and had difficulty swallowing. As a result, the staff was supposed to make sure the man ate slowly and swallowed each bite twice. Staff members were also to ensure the man’s head was elevated 90 degrees while eating and 45 degrees for 30 minutes after eating.

The report did not identify what staff member was responsible for the resident’s mealtime assistance on the evening of this death.


It’s frightening to think that a patient whose care instructions clearly indicated that he needed help when eating was left on his own at mealtime. This type of negligence is unacceptable. If you suspect that a loved one in a skilled nursing facility is not getting adequate care, you may have a case. Contact the nursing home neglect attorneys of Michael J. O’Connor & Associates for free review of your case.