Eadie Hill Lawsuit Seeks to Hold Both Liberty Residence and Sanctuary Wadsworth Liable in Wrongful Death of Mercedes Chudy

On August 8, 2020, Mercedes Chudy was admitted to Liberty Residence, suffering from worsening confusion and an inability to care for herself. On October 6th of that same year, having passed through the “care” of not only Liberty Residence but also Sanctuary Wadsworth, Mercedes passed away. While both nursing homes claim to offer attentive, resident-centric care, we allege that each facility showed a shocking disregard for Mercedes’ well-being and that, if not for their negligence and recklessness, Mercedes would be alive today.

When Mercedes was admitted to the care of Liberty Residence, we believe that staff was well-aware of her unique medical needs. A 97-year-old woman, Mercedes was a high fall risk and, because she was on blood-thinning medication, she was at high risk of a brain bleed if she were to fall. And yet, despite these concerns, a mere five weeks after being admitted to Liberty Residence, she had a fall at a moment when she was completely unsupervised, according to the complaint. 

According to the complaint, facility Staff immediately noted a bump on Mercedes’ right forehead and, several hours later, she began complaining of pain to the first finger and pinky of her left hand. Despite these concerning signs, we allege that staff did not provide adequate documentation or follow-up for Mercedes, including a shocking lack of neurological monitoring. Only three days later, once Mercedes began slurring her speech and having difficulty communicating her needs, did staff finally send her to the hospital.

At the Akron General Medical Center Emergency Department, doctors diagnosed Mercedes with a notable head injury. Mercedes had suffered a 19mm-thick subdural hematoma—a collection of blood outside the brain—and a 5mm midline shift—a condition where the buildup of blood and swelling pushes the entire brain off-center. She also had a urinary tract infection, contusion of the left leg, and fracture of her left index finger.

After being properly treated at the hospital, Mercedes was then admitted to Sanctuary Wadsworth for rehabilitative care. Despite Sanctuary’s claim to “offer… a warm, comforting environment and compassionate connections,” the treatment Mercedes received at this facility was no better than at Liberty, according to the complaint.  Sanctuary should have been well-aware not only of the fact that Mercedes was at risk for falls, but of the danger of these falls to her health. However, just a day into her stay at Sanctuary, Mercedes fell again, according to the complaint.  

Not only does the complaint allege that Sanctuary’s negligence led directly to this fall, but also that staff was extremely reckless in their treatment of Mercedes after her fall. Despite the obvious risks to her health and the fact that she was observed being “restless and unable to answer staff as to what she was doing” the day after the fall, staff waited a full two days before sending Mercedes to the hospital, according to the complaint.

By then, it was too late. A CT scan at Akron General revealed a large subdural hematoma and an 8mm midline shift, leaving Mercedes disoriented and nonverbal. She was admitted to the hospital for palliative care the next day and transferred to hospice care two days later. She died on October 6th, just over two weeks after being admitted to Sanctuary. A medical examiner ruled the cause of death to be “complications of blunt force trauma of the head,” a direct result of Mercedes’ falls.

Both Liberty Residence and Sanctuary Wadsworth are for-profit facilities. This means that they follow a model that we believe often places profits over people. The biggest source of income for for-profit facilities is residents and the biggest cost is staffing. Therefore, we allege that it is in their best financial interest to systematically understaff their facilities, leading to wholly preventable tragedies like Mercedes’ death.

At Eadie Hill, we are proud to bring a lawsuit against both Liberty Residence and Sanctuary Wadsworth, as well as their parent companies, on behalf of Mercedes’ family. Although nothing can bring Mercedes back, we hope to bring some small measure of justice to her loved ones.

Courses of Action

The lawsuit filed by Eadie Hill against Liberty Residence, Sanctuary Wadsworth, and their parent companies alleges the follow courses of action:

  1. Negligence and Recklessness. The complaint alleges that the defendants failed to provide proper care and treatment to Mercedes and that this negligence was the direct cause of her injuries. This failure includes choosing to provide inadequate observation and monitoring, choosing to provide too few or underqualified nursing staff, and failing to provide appropriate care, among other acts of negligence and recklessness.
  2. Wrongful Death. The complaint alleges that Mercedes’ death was caused by the physical injuries sustained due to the defendants’ negligence and recklessness. It also alleges that Mercedes’ next-of-kin suffered mental anguish and grief, medical and funeral expenses, and loss of Mercedes’ society and companionship as a cause of the defendants’ actions.
  3. Nursing Home Residents Rights Violation. The complaint alleges that the defendants violated Mercedes’ rights as a resident of their facilities, including the right to adequate and appropriate medical treatment and nursing care.

Eadie Hill’s Commitment to Justice

At Eadie Hill, we are dedicated to seeking justice for the victims of for-profit healthcare facilities. Any time a facility puts profits ahead of people, it places its residents’ lives in danger. When a facility is insufficiently staffed or staff is undertrained, it’s only a matter of time before tragedy strikes.

It is Eadie Hill’s mission to hold these for-profit entities to account every time a patient suffers unnecessarily or passes on as a result of the negligence and recklessness of a healthcare facility. We are proud to seek justice on behalf of the victims of the for-profit system.

About Liberty Residence and Sanctuary Wadsworth

Although Liberty Residence claims that their “residents come first,” the reports of people who have direct experience of the facility tell a different story. According to one man on ‘A Place for Mom’ who had a loved one stay at Liberty, it was a “horrible experience.” He felt that the “management was terrible” and that “they do not care for their staff,” concluding that “management does not care about your loved one.” Another woman, posting on the same site, noted that “staff is not respected and treated with respect by management” and that it is a “hostile work environment.”

A quick look under the hood reveals a similar story about Sanctuary Wadsworth. While their website claims that at their facility “the sanctity and dignity of life should always be honored and protected,” other evidence suggests that this is not necessarily the case. According to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid, Sanctuary only provides 29 minutes of registered nurse (RN) nursing care a day, well below the national average of 41 minutes. As a result, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid rate the facility as “below average” both in RN staffing and staffing in general.

This impression is borne out by the testimony of people who’ve worked at the facility. One former nursing assistant complained that “the workload is too much with no staff,” noting that “there is no teamwork whatsoever” and that management “screw[s] over their employees time and time again.” This sentiment was echoed by another former employee who noted that “management is… very unprofessional” and that “this leads to all the staff being stressed and in turn making it a hostile environment.”

Liberty Residence II 
AKA Liberty Residence Holdings, LLC
1054 Freedom Drive
Wadsworth, OH 44281

Liberty Residence of Ohio, LLC
c/o Registered Agent:
Paracorp Incorporated
4568 Mayfield Rd.
Cleveland, OH 44121

Titan Senquest Management, Inc.
c/o Registered Agent:
Paracorp Incorporated
4568 Mayfield Rd.
Cleveland, OH 44121

Sanctuary Wadsworth
AKA Sanctuary Wadsworth, LLC
365 Johnson Rd.
Wadsworth, OH 44281

Highland Park Service Corp.
28601 Chagrin Blvd.
Suite 600
Cleveland, OH 44122

Sanctuary Health Network, LLC
c/o Reisgered Agent
Highland Park Service Corp.
28601 Chagrin Blvd.
Suite 600
Cleveland, OH 44122

Magnolia Care Center, Inc.
c/o Registered Agent:
Stephen M. Krutowsky
2251 Front St.
Suite 200
Cuyahoga Falls, OH 44221

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