Four Nursing Assistants Fired from Topsfield Maine Nursing Home Following Alleged Abuse of Residents

Wednesday, June 29th, 2011

Masconomet Healthcare Center, one of Maine’s top-rated nursing homes, is where 4 nursing assistants have recently been fired following various forms of abuse to residents.  Two administrators at the facility were also replaced at the facility, which is owned by Haverhill-based Whittier Health Network.

Dr. Alfred Arcidi stated that quick action was taken to correct the problems, and that the organization takes much pride in treating patients well.  He stated in a telephone interview that the organization will not tolerate such treatment, and that Whittier moved immediately to take control of the situation.

Reports state that 4 CNA’s regularly engaged in offensive taunting of residents as well as sexual explicit regarding the patients mental and physical conditions.  One nursing assistant recorded a dementia patient on a cell phone camera in a confused state answering questions; the assistant later shared the video with coworkers for amusement.

The same 4 nursing assistants were also found to be agitating and provoking residents in to such a state that they would not have to provide care to the residents.  The assistants were suspended from their jobs initially, then fired according to a lawyer for the facility.  These incidents took place in 2010 and in the first few months of 2011.  It is also known that at least 7 other employees knew about the incidents, as well as a nurse.  No one reported the abuse to administrators according to reports.  Disciplinary action against these employees is being considered by the facility according to Kathy Soderberg, corporate counsel for Whittier Health Network.

A report filed by the Department of Public Health states that the workers were more involved in texting, playing loud music and engaging in conversations about their sex lives and illicit drug use in front of patients than they were with caring for the patients.  Residents were told to wait when the workers, who were not identified in the report, were texting or involved in other personal issues.

Masconomet was ordered to pay a $3,000 per day fine beginning March 25 until violations were addressed.  The facility was notified on April 27th by the state that it is now considered to be in compliance.

If you suspect that your loved one is being abused or neglected in a nursing home, contact the Buffalo NY personal injury and nursing attorneys at Brown Chiari.  We are dedicated to protecting the rights of nursing home residents and obtaining the justice you deserve.

Normandy Nursing Center in Missouri Target of Investigation Involving Abuse and Neglect

Wednesday, June 29th, 2011

Following allegations of abuse and neglect of a 37-year-old Normandy Nursing Center resident, the nursing home facility is being investigated by Missouri Protection & Advocacy Services according to Shawn de Loyola, executive director of the organization.  This organization is commissioned by the federal government to protect the disabled.

Crystal Miller, sister of the 37-year-old male victim of the abuse and neglect, stated that she contacted the Missouri Protection & Advocacy agency following an incident in which her brother was taken to St. Mary’s Health Center by ambulance.  John Patrick Maloney, the resident in question, was brought to the hospital from the nursing home in a state of malnourishment, dehydration and in respiratory distress.  He also experienced renal failure.

Miller who is a nurse in Big Rock, Tennessee told authorities that John Patrick’s ventilator was almost turned off at one point because of instructions relayed from his guardian that he not be intubated or resuscitated.  Miller said that a physician at St. Mary’s Health Center intervened at the request of the family.  According to a hospital spokesman Maloney arrived at the hospital in critical condition, and that his condition was upgraded to serious after a period of time.

Miller stated that her brother was in 24-hour nursing care and was not taken care of.  Maloney is developmentally disabled and epileptic; Miller said that it looked as if her brother had lost almost 100 pounds in the 3 years he had been living at the nursing facility.  Because of a serious family rift and her father making Maloney a ward of the state without notice to the family (he is currently a prisoner in Tennessee), Miller had not previously been allowed to visit her brother.

Normandy Nursing Center was investigated in 2009 when it was determined that William Christopher Jones, a 46-year-old mentally ill resident of the facility, died due to an overdose of morphine, although Jones was not prescribed morphine.  Two months after this incident a second incident involving a resident having opiates in her system took place; this resident was also mentally ill.  It is still a mystery as to how Jones ended up with a fatal amount of morphine in his system.

Medicare gives the nursing facility a rating of two stars which means that the services and care provided are below average.

Brown Chiari is a team of New York nursing neglect attorneys dedicated to representing the rights of our clients.  Contact us for a free evaluation of your case.

Three Employees Arrested as Probe In To Winterville, GA Retirement Center Continues

Wednesday, June 29th, 2011

Recently, three employees of Winterville Retirement Center in Winterville, GA were arrested over a period of two months following various crimes including embezzling Social Security payments of an Alzheimer’s patient.  Sergeant Jimmy Fulcher is investigating the crimes, and stated that the three employees who were arrested were involved in separate crimes.

According to Fulcher, Sherrye Dianne Huff, former administrator of the center, is blamed for setting the environment.  Fulcher stated that one example of a crime committed at the center was that of an 82-year-old woman being punched and her medication being stolen.  Huff was arrested on May 2 and booked on five felony charges.  These charges included two counts of exploiting an elderly or disabled person and three counts of theft.  Huff was also charged with one count of misdemeanor theft. (published by Brown Chiari, Buffalo NY Injury Attorneys)

A 52-year-old resident of Winterville employed at the center was the first person arrested.  Cynthia Barrow was charged with abuse of an elderly person on February 22nd  following an incident in which an 82-year-old woman was punched in the face after taking butter from a food cart in the dining room at the facility according to Sergeant Fulcher.

The women receiving the punch struck the food cart and then the floor, resulting in an egg-size knot on the back of her head.  She was treated at Athens Regional Medical Center where she was released the same day.  Less than one month later, the 82-year-old resident died.  According to Fulcher the Georgia Bureau of Investigations is trying to determine whether the head injury resulting from the fall contributed to her death.

Shortly after the death of the resident it was discovered that someone had taken over 100 Xanax tablets that had been prescribed for the woman.  Shyniqua Anastacia Buckles, a 20-year-old Athens resident was found to have the stolen tablets.  She was charged with obtaining a controlled substance fraudulently.

Huff, administrator of the center, took payments made in the form of pension and Social Security checks from one resident’s son.  These payments were supposed to be forwarded to the center’s parent company in Wisconsin, but were apparently being kept by Huff.  This was discovered after the son of a 69-year-old resident received a notice from the parent company that the account was in excess of $10,000 in arrears for the care of his father.

Nursing home abuse and neglect is a large and growing problem across the country.  If you suspect abuse or neglect of your loved one in an elderly care facility, contact the Buffalo New York nursing home abuse lawyers at Brown Chiari.

May 8, 2011 Begins National Nursing Home Week

Wednesday, June 29th, 2011

Every year the AHCA (American Health Care Association) celebrates National Nursing Home Week.  The theme for 2011, which begins May 8th, is “Fulfilling the Promise”.  The AHCA says that the theme was selected to honor those who are “Fulfilling the Promise” by serving others, adding value to life and helping to overcome many of the infirmities of age and disability. (article provided by Buffalo personal injury attorneys at Brown Chiari)

We hope this theme is an important one that is held in the hearts and minds of all nursing home workers, but it’s hard to be optimistic when we see so much abuse and neglect in nursing home facilities across the country every day.

For those who truly hold these values close, it is truly admirable.  There are nurses, aids and other staff members in our elderly care facilities that genuinely have the best interest of the residents at heart.  We never hear the good stories about those who do an exceptional job caring for and nurturing our elderly loved ones because there are so many horrific stories about all of the “bad” that goes on in many nursing homes.

To those nursing home workers who strive to improve the lives of and show compassion to individuals confined to a nursing home facility, we commend you.  It seems that you are in the minority and a rare breed today.

During National Nursing Home Week, we urge those reading this to call your elderly loved ones in nursing home facilities or better yet, give them a visit.  Even though they are getting up there in age, they still enjoy knowing they are loved and thought of on occasion.

Those who know someone who offers exceptional care at a nursing home should let them know how special they are.  This is often a tough job, as many workers who are compassionate and caring are forced to put up with other staff members who are bullies and even abusive.  These individuals deserve a special “thanks” for all they do for our elderly loved ones – and for putting up with the circumstances that often surround them in a nursing home environment.

At Brown Chiari, we fight for the rights of those who are in nursing home facilities and have been abused or neglected.  If you suspect that your loved one is being abused or mistreated in any way, call our New York nursing home abuse and neglect lawyers today.