CHARLESTON - A Cabell County couple says their Huntington hospital should have prevented a fall.

Alice and Clifford Clark charge HealthSouth Rehabilitation Hospital of Huntington of not following through with its own fall risk assessment, leaving Alice primed for a slip as she tried to use the bathroom in December.

The case was filed Aug. 2 in Kanawha Court because, "The defendant routinely advertises and solicits business in Kanawha County, West Virginia, thus venue is appropriate before this court."

Robert Berthold of Charleston law firm Berthold, Tiano and Dell is representing the plaintiffs.

They say on Dec. 12, Alice was transferred from St. Mary's Hospital of Huntington to HealthSouth, where a fall safety risk assessment of her was performed.

"HealthSouth, by and through its duly authorized agents and employees, did negligently, carelessly, recklessly, incompetently and in a deviation from the normal standard of care fail to take adequate measures to protect Mrs. Clark from falling," the complaint says.

On Dec. 21, Alice says she fell while attempting to go to the bathroom and broke her hip. She says she was required to have surgery with placement of orthopedic hardware.

She is suing for compensatory damages stemming from $110,000 in extra hospital bills, pain and suffering, permanent injury and an impairment of capacity to enjoy life. She also seeks court costs.

Judge Jennifer Bailey Walker has been assigned the case.

Kanawha Circuit Court case number 06-C-1515

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