W.V. Judge Affirms Most Of $91.5M Damage Award

CHARLESTON, W.V. (AP) - A Kanawha County judge has affirmed most of a $91.5 million damage award against a Charleston nursing home.

Media outlets report that Circuit Judge Paul Zakaib Jr. cut about $400,000 from the jury's award in a lawsuit against Heartland of Charleston.

In August, jurors found that the nursing home failed to feed and care for 87-year-old Dorothy Douglas. She died of dehydration complications after she left the facility.

Zakaib ruled Thursday that 20 percent of about $5 million in non-economic damages awarded by the jury was subject to West Virginia's $500,000 cap on such damages in medical malpractice cases.

Heartland's owner, HCR Manorcare, argued that the entire award should be subject to the cap.

HCR Manorcare attorney Brian Glasser says the company will ask for a new trial.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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