Nursing Home Loses License After Poor Care is Investigated

One state has revoked a nursing home's license after citing the facility for neglect, abuse and lack of supervision -including a woman who tried to get out 40 times in 12 days and succeeded twice. Witnesses also told investigators a certified nurse's assistant at the facility cursed at residents and pinned a woman's arms down on a table after the resident hit her.

The nurse's assistant "was abusing residents and they pretty much affirmed what she had done but they didn't realize it was abuse," the director of the state's Bureau of Health Provider Standards, said. "Those were big issues and they were already on probation. It was really just a string of really bad incidents one after another."

Surveyors also noted a resident whose pressure sore on his wrist went untreated for so long that bone was visible when it was finally caught. By then, a new sore was developing on his other wrist. The facility was placed on probation in January 2009 and lost its license after waiving a March 11 revocation hearing. Now the facility has lost its Medicaid and Medicare funding from the government, and administrators have gone from 40 patients to trying to relocate its lone remaining resident.

The female resident who managed to leave twice was found once in the parking lot near a busy alley and on another occasion was discovered blocks away and had to be chased down by staff. Investigators said the woman, who suffers from Alzheimer's and whose name was not released, apparently figured out that if she stooped low enough she could exit without a sensor she wore setting off alarms. Some employees said the alarms couldn't be heard in parts of the nursing home and sometimes didn't sound at all. For more, read the story.

Robert W. Carter,  Jr. is a Virginia attorney whose law practice is dedicated to protecting the rights of the victims of nursing home and assisted living neglect and abuse in Richmond, Roanoke, Norfolk, Lynchburg, Danville, Charlottesville, and across Virginia.

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