An Ontario man whose family said he was "rotting alive" from a massive bedore has died of complications related to the wound.
Bob Wilson from Burlington, Ont. however, in palliative care on Saturday. He was 77.
A denier decided that his primary cause of death was an infection associated with a gaping pressure ulcer on his back, his daughter Linda Moss said.
"To be honest, it's a bit of a relief that he no longer suffers," Moss told Wednesday for CTVNews.ca.
Wilson was admitted to Joseph Brant Hospital in Burlington six months ago after a serious case. In April, he was transferred to Hamilton General Hospital for surgery, which is when doctors found the awful bed. By that time, it had become black.
Wilson's family soon learned that an infection had buried deep in Wilson's legs and blood.
"And that's why he went into palliative care – because there was nothing more that they could do for him," Moss said.
Now the family is left with great questions about how the staff at the Joseph Brant hospital made it possible for beds to go unnoticed.
"For our health and peace of mind, we want a little more clarity about who, what and why, because we didn't know about this pressure ulcer and we should have. Because we could have done something about it or helped," said Moss.
The hospital manager met the family last week, a few days before Wilson's death, and apologizes for what happened, Moss said. An investigation is in progress.
Moss said the hospital has described the case as "a major misunderstanding at all levels". Yet she praised the hospital for sweeping the plant, as she says, found 21 other patients with bedsores.
"I hope this is not just a Band-Aid effect, but they will change protocols and procedures," she said.
After CTV News first reported Wilson's case in May, Joseph Brant Hospital released a statement of action plan for the treatment of patients with pressure ulcers. The hospital has undertaken to conduct quarterly prevalence studies to "increase the monitoring and prevention of nursing acquired pressure ulcers".
"It is our commitment to be open and transparent with our society and to insure the people we serve for us to offer safe, high quality care. We are also committed to continuous learning and improvement of our daily practice and to provide leadership to increase awareness of hospital-acquired pressure ulcers, "wrote the healthcare manager and CEO Eric Vandewall.
Bedsores are caused by pressure on the skin from lying or sitting in a position for extended periods. They are almost always preventable through proper assessment and care.
More than 10,000 cases of beds were reported to the Ontario Health Ministry between 2016 and 2017, the most recent record numbers. In the same year, 24,500 long-term care cases were reported. However, each case varies seriously.
After her father's death, Moss said she and her sisters are working to become patient advocates. They have already spoken to Angel Project, a charity that works to make the hospital more comfortable for patients.
"Our father is gone and it is devastating what happened to him. But if we can help other families make sure they don't go through what we went through, we must do it," she says.
"Sometimes it takes a tragedy to provoke change."