Pendleton Memorial Methodist Hospital and its corporate parent have settled a wrongful-death lawsuit brought by the family of a 73-year-old woman who died after Hurricane Katrina left the hospital without electricity.

Terms of Tuesday's settlement with Althea LaCoste's family were sealed.

They were not claiming malpractice by doctors or nurses. Rather, they claimed that the hospital and Universal Health Services Inc. of King of Prussia, Pa., negligently failed to prepare for a storm of Katrina's magnitude.

LaCoste was recovering from pneumonia and using a portable ventilator. Relatives took her to Methodist Hospital as the hurricane approached. She survived the 18 hours without power, but her family says the trauma led to her death.