Client Hit by Scooter in Retirement Home Recovers
Virginia G. Heidbreder was born on November 27, 1921 and is currently 89 years of age.
She is a widow and had been a school teacher in Clover Park, first in the junior high school and later in senior high. She taught English, College Prep, Preparatory Writing and Drama, directing the school’s plays and musicals. She retired in 1978 and currently resides at Point Defiance Village in Tacoma and helps to edit the newsletter there.
Another resident of Point Defiance Village used to ride around the facility on a motorized chair or scooter called a “Jazzy.” This was a heavy metal vehicle that approximated the weight of a motorcycle. It was very dangerous to be transporting around without proper control.
The resident driving the scooter suffered from dementia and Parkinson’s disease. Unfortunately, on August 5, 2009, he struck Virginia, as she was walking along a hallway with her walker, with his motorized scooter.
Dr. Arthur J. Ozolin of Tacoma Orthopedic Surgeons, on August 18, 2009, noted “the patient had a recent injury to her left ankle and leg on 8/5/09 when she was dragged by a motorized wheelchair with her walker, somehow straining the left leg with then subsequently increasing swelling and redness…” His impression was chronic cellulitis of the left leg with recent aggravation status post multiple left foot and leg surgery.
The left ankle and leg began swelling and became red and painful.
Virginia also suffered from back pain after the incident. An x-ray was taken of the low back on August 23, 2009 that showed a compression deformity of L4. A later CT scan confirmed a L4 compression fracture.
On September 4, 2009, vetebroplasty surgery for the L4 fracture vertebrae was performed at Tacoma General. That surgery consists of basically gluing the fractured vertebra back together.
On September 5, 2009, Virginia was admitted to University Place Care Center to recover from her surgery and injuries. On October 17, 2009, she was transported back to Point Defiance Village.
The services that she had at University Place Care Center included physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy.
Virginia is now back at Point Defiance Village and has resumed many of her activities, but her mobility has been more limited now due to the injury. Her case was recently settled by Mike McKasy of our firm for $95,000.00