New York Nursing Home RN Surrenders License

Sunday, November 20th, 2011

Poor care in nursing homes and elderly care facilities has unfortunately been a longstanding problem in New York State, as evidenced recently when an RN surrendered her license following a nursing home abuse matter.  Myrna Siegel, a registered nurse, surrendered her license following an investigation performed by the State Office of Medicaid Inspector General.  Siegel had physically and verbally abused residents.  According to Mid-Hudson News reports, she called one resident an ‘evil witch’ after forcibly holding the resident down while giving care.  Siegel also reportedly told a male resident that if he did not take his medicine, “he had a death wish and was going to die.”

In other New York nursing home abuse news, two Staten Island nursing home staff members recently lost their licenses following the abuse of a 40-year-old resident.  This incident occurred at Lily Pond Nursing Home.

Cynthia Ferry, a CNA at Lily Pond, was observed by an EMT striking the resident in the head.  On the night that the assault took place, a Licensed Practical Nurse working as the evening nurse supervisor was informed by the EMT that Ferry had struck a resident on the head.  The LPN, Josefina Bernabe, instructed the EMT not to report the incident to protect Ferry from getting in trouble.  Both Ferry and Bernabe were forced to surrender their licenses with the condition that they do not engage in any type of health care employment.  Ferry and Bernabe were charged by the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit of the New York State Attorney General’s Office.

Of course New York isn’t the only state that sees an overabundance of nursing home abuse – and the sad thing is, most of the abuse goes on without staff or family members being aware of the abuse/neglect.  Abuse is a serious and growing problem across the nation; we expect our loved ones to be cared for and nurtured in these facilities, but all too often this is not the case.

Brown Chiari is a team of nursing home abuse Law Firm in Buffalo who work diligently to protect the rights of those who have suffered abuse in nursing homes.  Contact us today for a free evaluation of your case.

Study Finds More Than 90% of Nursing Homes Employ Convicted Criminals

Sunday, November 20th, 2011

According to The New York Times, a new report reveals that over 90% of nursing homes in the nation employ at least one worker who has been convicted of a crime.  In fact, the report stated 5% of all nursing home employees have at least one criminal conviction, some more.

Daniel R. Levinson, inspector general of the Dept. of Health and Human Services, issued the report.  Levinson obtained the names of over 35,000 nursing home employees, at which point he checked with the FBI in order to determine how many of those 35,000 had criminal records.

Levinson stated, “Our analysis of F.B.I. criminal history records revealed that 92% of nursing facilities employed at least one individual with at least one criminal conviction.”  Levinson also said that almost half of the nursing facilities have five or more individuals in their employ with at least one conviction.  In one instance, a facility employed 164 workers; 34 of these workers had at least one conviction.

There are no federal laws or regulations that require nursing homes to check whether prospective employees have a federal or state criminal record.  In the U.S., 10 states require that potential employees are checked for F.B.I. and state records; another 33 require only a check of state records.  Other states currently have no explicit requirements in place.

Even with minimum requirements in place, many individuals who are convicted of a crime in one state have secured employment at nursing home facilities in another state.  Additionally, some states leave the hiring decision up to the individual facilities, meaning that administrators of the nursing home facilities can use their own judgment in hiring individuals with a criminal record.

Sadly, nursing home and elderly care facilities today have a reputation for abuse and neglect, and these statistics only add to the problem.  When nursing homes choose to hire individuals with criminal convictions, it frequently puts elderly residents at further risk for abuse, assault and theft.

Brown Chiari is a team of Lancaster NY nursing home neglect lawyers dedicated to protecting the rights of individuals in nursing homes.  Contact us today for a free evaluation of your nursing home abuse or neglect case.