Chicago, IL (PRWEB) July 01, 2013
The death by suicide of a 17 year old male at Linden Oaks Psychiatric Hospital in Naperville in March 2012 led to a review by the hospital of practices at the far west suburban mental health facility and resulted in a $1.65 million settlement of a wrongful death claim. (Case # 70847, Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois)
Linden Oaks and the youth’s family settled the matter without a lawsuit. Suit was filed after the settlement solely for purpose of complying with Illinois law that requires such a wrongful death settlement be Court approved. The final step in the process was the approval of the settlement by Judge Gregory O’Brien in Cook County Probate Court.
In an unusual move, representatives of Linden Oaks volunteered that as a direct result of the boy’s death, the hospital has made changes in their patient processing procedures. According to Jerry A. Latherow of Latherow Law Office in Chicago, the family’s attorney, representatives of Linden Oaks were extremely forthcoming following the boy’s death. “Contrary to the norm, the Linden Oaks administrators immediately stepped up and conceded that mistakes had been made. Rather than an impersonal form letter of condolence, the hospital exhibited a true expression of sorrow and regret for any negligence,” Latherow explained.
“It is unfortunate that when this type of tragedy occurs, a hospital’s or medical care professional’s immediate reaction is to retreat into a defensive posture. In this case, Linden Oaks exhibited a refreshing willingness to take responsibility and avoid litigation for them and the suffering family.”
He concluded that, as expected, the family is crushed, but their focus in pursuing the claim is to ensure that what happened to their son will never happen again at this facility. “The encouraging response by Linden Oaks shows that they truly care about their patients and intend to learn from this tragedy by engendering reforms that will ultimately pave the way for better mental health outcomes for all their patients.”
A copy of the suit filed to comply with Illinois law is attached and available upon request.
About Attorney Jerry Latherow
Jerry A. Latherow is a veteran trial lawyer who has attained verdicts and settlements for his clients in cases involving medical malpractice, vehicular and construction liability, and airplane crash cases. He recently served as the President of the Illinois Trial Lawyers Association and has repeatedly been listed as one of the top 100 attorneys in Illinois by Illinois Super Lawyers, and as one of the top 100 trial lawyers in Illinois by the National Trial Lawyers Association.