Friday, December 27, 2013

Kindred - Final Jury Verdict Massachusetts

Middlesex Superior Court, MA. Jury Verdict Dec 17th, 2013:

It is ORDERED and ADJUDGED: That The plaintiff(s), Jeanne Stanford POA recover of he defendant(s), Kindred Healthcare, Inc., d/b/a Kindred Transitional Care and Rehabilitation-Marlborough,Kindred Nursing Centers East, L.L.C., Kindred Healthcare Operating, Inc. the sum of $2,014,000.00 with interest thereon from 01/23/2012 to 12/18/2013 in the sum of $460,189.23 as provided by law, and its costs of action.
Paul D. Wilson, Justice). Copies mailed 12/18/2013

Plaintiffs Attorney: Bernard J. Hamill

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Nursing-home violence a growing concern

 "Nursing homes are ill-equipped to care for the large number of aggressive residents they house and to keep other occupants safe, industry experts and political critics charge.
New research by the Ontario Association of Non-Profit Homes and Services for Seniors (OANHSS) shows that 11 per cent of the 78,000 residents of Ontario long-term-care homes are aggressive.
That number is expected to grow as homes continue to take on more and more complex residents, said OANHSS chief executive officer Donna Rubin."
Nursing-home violence a growing concern, with 11% of residents classed as ‘aggressive’ | Toronto Star:

Friday, November 15, 2013

Abuse/neglect is the biggest fear going into a care home

"The fear of being abused is the main reason people do not want to end up in a care home, a damning study reveals today.
Four in 10 said they would refuse to go into care. A third of them said it was mainly because they were concerned about selling their home to cover costs.
But half admitted the biggest reason was they worried about abuse or neglect.
Claudia Wood, of think-tank Demos, which commissioned the research, said: “The results have confirmed our fears that care homes are seen as something to be avoided and a last resort.
"Abuse and poor care are real issues in the care system, but we can’t assume all care homes are like those identified in shocking TV investigations.”"
Abuse or neglect is the biggest reason people fear going into a care home according to a new report by the Demos think-tank - Mirror Online:

Monday, November 11, 2013

Bethel nursing home fined by state

A Bethel nursing home is among four in the state that have been fined in connection with lapses in patient care.
In a citation released this week, the state Department of Public Health announced that on Oct. 9 it fined Bethel Healthcare Center of Bethel $1,500 in connection with a resident who was burned.
DPH records show that on July 2, a heating pad was left behind the knee of a resident for several hours, instead of a half-hour, when one licensed practical nurse did not remove it or tell the next shift it was there   Bethel nursing home fined by state - NewsTimes

by Bernard Hamill

Saturday, November 02, 2013

A family demands to know why their father died of malnutrition

A prominent Indigenous family is preparing to sue a Sydney nursing home for gross medical negligence, alleging appalling neglect caused the premature death of their loved one.

The Federal Government's Aged Care Complaints Scheme has already found that the Parramatta Nursing Home failed on two counts to adequately care for 67-year-old Don Williams. But Mr Williams' family is calling for aged care providers to be held accountable.
Lateline - 17/10/2013: A family demands to know why their father died of malnutrition

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Nursing home in Marion County loses Medicare and Medicaid funding : News :

 "Marion Nursing Center, Inc. is no longer receiving Medicare and Medicaid funding after it was found not to be in compliance with requirements for the programs, according to the Federal Department of Health and Human Services and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Now, patients either have to pay out of pocket or move.
The nursing home lost its funding Sunday.
Officials say they will continue making payments for those patients at the nursing center for up to 30 days until they can be placed in other facilities.
Federal healthcare officials say they can't go into specifics right now as to why the funding was pulled, but will say they terminate funding to nursing homes due to patient care issues and if that care isn't provided in a safe environment."
Nursing home in Marion County loses Medicare and Medicaid funding : News :

by Bernard Hamill
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Nursing Home Abuse

Friday, October 25, 2013

Care home worker: 'I couldn't live with knowledge of abuse'

Speaking outside the inquest, Lisa Martin, who first informed police of the problems at the Nursing home, said she felt she had no choice but to come forward:
I came forward because I had witnessed too much poor management and care to vulnerable adults and I couldn't live with the knowledge any longer and felt I had no choice but to tell the police.
Morally I know I did the right thing but personally I have not worked for two years and the case has had a huge impact on my life.
However, I wouldn't want to dissuade people from doing the right thing if they see vulnerable elderly people being abused and neglected.
Speaking of her former colleagues, she added: "They shouldn't be allowed to work in the industry." Care home worker: 'I couldn't live with knowledge of abuse' - ITV News

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Coroner condemns "institutionalised abuse" after five pensioners died

Nursing Home home where five pensioners died through neglect was plagued by “institutionalised abuse”, an inquest heard yesterday.
Blundering staff at Orchid View gave vulnerable residents wrong drugs doses, left them alone in soiled bedding and clothes, and manhandled them.
One OAP, Jean Halfpenny, died after being given an overdose of the blood-thinning drug warfarin.
But whistleblower Lisa Martin told the hearing she was ordered to shred the 77-year-old’s drugs chart after she had gone to hospital bleeding to death.
She said a colleague declared: “S***, we can’t send her to hospital with those. They will shut us down.”
Coroner Penelope Schofield said those involved in neglect at the £3,000-a-month care home in Copthorne, West Sussex, should be “ashamed”.
She spoke at the Horsham inquest into the deaths of 19 OAPs over two years. The home was shut in 2011.
A five-week inquest heard how some residents were given wrong doses of medication, left soiled and unattended due to staff shortages and there was a lack of management.
Call bells were also often not answered for long periods or could not be reached by elderly people living at the home, which was deemed "an accident waiting to happen".
Ms Schofield said: "There was institutionalized abuse throughout the home and it started, in my view, at a very early stage, and nobody did anything about it.
"It was completely mismanaged and understaffed and failed to provide a safe environment for residents."
Ms Schofield added: “There was ­institutionalized abuse throughout. This, to me, was from the top down.”
Orchid View care home: Coroner condemns "institutionalised abuse" after five pensioners died - Mirror Online

by Bernard Hamill
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Nursing Home Abuse
Rape in Nursing Homes

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Serious violations found at Kindred nursing home

GREENFIELD -- An inspection of Kindred Transitional Care and Rehabilitation Milwaukee found 23 federal violations, according to the Journal Sentinel. The report was filed in early August, and inspectors levied fines of nearly $40,000 to the nursing home.
Violations include numerous examples of giving residents the wrong dosage of medication, and in one case even switching two patients medications. The inspection also found five violations that put the residents in "immediate jeopardy," meaning they could cause harm or even death to the residents.
The Health Department will make an unannounced follow-up inspection in the future to see if Kindred fixed any of the violations, and if they fail they may lose their license.
Serious violations found at Greenfield nursing home - 620 WTMJ - Milwaukee's Source for Local News and Weather

Thursday, October 03, 2013

Nursing home worker charged in death of patient

 Following an investigation by the Oklahoma Attorney General's Office, two nursing home workers were charged in Beckham County District Court last month.

One of the workers, a Granite woman has been charged in connection with the death of a 76-year-old nursing home patient and has been denied bail. 

According to an affidavit, the Elk City Police Department contacted the state Attorney General's office about possible neglect or abuse by a caretaker at Bell Avenue Nursing Center in Elk City in April of 2012. 

The investigation concluded that a 76-year-old patient was injured during the transfer from a bed to a wheelchair and suffered life threatening injuries, according to the court document. 

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Number of care concerns found at Broomfield Skilled Nursing - Broomfield Enterprise

"Local, state and federal records show a history of staffing and regulatory problems at the Broomfield nursing facility where an employee is accused of sexually assaulting two patients in the past two months.

Records paint a picture of Broomfield Skilled Nursing having high staff turnover and low quality ratings. The recent arrest of the aide accused of sexual assault and a wrongful death lawsuit filed by the family of well-known Broomfield resident Marlene Politzer are among the more serious concerns.

Antonio Nieto, a certified nursing aide at the facility is accused of sexually assaulting two female patients, ages 59 and 73, in July and August."  Number of care concerns found at Broomfield Skilled Nursing - Broomfield Enterprise:

by Bernard Hamill
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Nursing Home Abuse

Rape in Nursing Homes

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Third victim identified in Ellisville sexual abuse case

Police say a third woman was sexually assaulted by the St. Louis County man accused of fondling two elderly clients while bathing them.

Walter Javier Martinez, 44, has been charged with two counts of deviate sexual assault, one count of forcible rape and another count of forcible sodomy.

He is accused of fondling one elderly client while bathing her at Bethesda Meadow nursing home. The alleged victim was an 80-year-old woman with dementia. Another client at Sunrise Living, a nursing facility in Chesterfield, was also abused between Jan. 1 and 16, according to police.

A third elderly victim told police that Martinez raped her while she tried to fight him off. She was a patient at a nursing home in St. Louis County.

Martinez confessed to abusing two of the women to Odyssey Hospice, his then-employer. Police say he was a licensed social worker when the alleged abuse happened."

Third victim identified in Ellisville sexual abuse case |

Thursday, September 05, 2013

20% of Elder Abuse occurs in Nursing Homes

Social worker Chris Dubble spoke at a workshop about recognizing elder abuse, hosted by the Perry County Area Agency on Aging (AAA) on June 21.  Dubble addressed the topic of elder abuse, including physical abuse, confinement, intimidation verbal and mental abuse, neglect and sexual abuse. His presentation was peppered with dramatic examples he’d encountered in his social work, such as a woman who left a nursing home for a weekend with her family and was raped by her son.
“This happens out there more than we ever want to admit,” Dubble said. “While we don’t want to think about it, we need to be aware.”
Dubble shared long lists of warning signs to look out for with both the possible victim and the abuser. Some signs and symptoms for a victim were their own testimony, denial of a problem, confusion about medication, refusal to receive care from caregiver, poor hygiene or incontinence.
Signs and symptoms for an abuser included but weren’t limited to being exhausted, overwhelmed or physically incapable of providing care; resisting outside services; threatening or intimidating the older adult; destroying property; and stating that the older adult is incompetent, sick or crazy.
Similar to other abusive situations, Dubble said elder abuse usually involves the abuser isolating and controlling the victim. He noted that it can happen anywhere but keeping people isolated and dependent is very easy. “That’s why you don’t usually see [the victims].”

Most elder abuse victims are female, dependent on others for care and live at home, though Dubble pointed out that 20 percent of abuse occurs in nursing homes — a disproportionate amount given that only about 5 percent of older adults live in nursing homes.

Elder abuse is on the rise in Perry County |

by Bernard Hamill

Nursing Home Abuse

Sunday, September 01, 2013

Crestwood Nursing Home Nurse Charged with Abusing a Patient in RI

A Warren resident who was accused of abusing a patient at Crestwood Nursing Home last year recently pleaded nolo to his charges.
According to Warren police, the department received a complaint from Newport Hospital in August of 2010 regarding an elderly male with injuries who claimed to have been assaulted by his nurse at Crestwood.
Crestwood Nursing Home Nurse Charged with Abusing a Patient - Police & Fire - Bristol-Warren, RI Patch:

Friday, August 23, 2013

Sacramento nursing home fined in patient's death

A Sacramento nursing home is responsible for the death of a patient with swallowing difficulties who choked on a piece of meat during a lunchtime outing with staff members, state regulators have concluded.
Mary Yip, 86, who suffered from dementia and disability from stroke, died a day after the choking incident in January 2012. At the time, she was accompanied by staff members and other patients of the Asian Community Center nursing home.
The nonprofit Foundation Aiding the Elderly, or FATE, filed a complaint against the facility at the request of Yip's family. The California Department of Public Health substantiated the agency's complaint and hit the nursing home with its most severe penalty, a Class AA citation, and an $80,000 fine.  
In a report released Wednesday, investigators said staff members served an unnamed patient, whom FATE founder Carole Herman identified as Yip, noodles with chunks of meat during the outing.
They failed to supervise her while she ate, despite a physician's directive that she was unable to chew and should eat only soft foods, regulators said
.Sacramento nursing home fined in patient's death - Health and Medicine - The Sacramento Bee:

Friday, August 16, 2013

nursing home workers charged with taking photos of naked residents

Two former nursing home nurse aides and employees of a Wisconsin nursing home have been charged with using their cellphones to photograph residents while they were naked.
Michelle A. Bulger, 22, of Cecil and Ashley J. Schaumberg, 20, of Pulaski were charged last week in Brown County, the Green Bay Press-Gazette reported Wednesday. Both have been fired as certified nursing assistants by Brookview Meadows, an adult-care and assisted living facility in Howard, Wis.
Schaumberg allegedly videotaped Bulger while she was assisting an 84-year-old who had an obstructed bowel and was naked from the waist down, prosecutors said. Bulger was apparently mugging for the camera, gagging and covering her mouth.
In another case, an 81-year-old resident was photographed while bathing.
Both Schaumburg and Bulger are charged with photographing nudity without consent, a crime that carries a potential sentence of more than three years.Ex-nursing home workers charged for taking photos of naked residents -

by Bernard Hamill
Nursing Home Abuse

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Mt. Vernon Woman Charged In Alleged Neglect Of A Nursing Home Patient | The Mount Vernon Daily Voice

A Mount Vernon woman faces accusations that she allegedly neglected, endangered and falsified records of a patient in her Queens, N.Y. nursing home who was suffering from dementia and went missing, according to State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.
Juliet Clifford, 43, failed to call authorities two weeks ago when Alan Frazer was found missing from the Bishop Charles Waldo Maclean Episcopal Nursing Home in Far Rockaway, the attorney general’s criminal complaint said.
The following day, Clifford removed medical notes from the 73-year-old patient’s record and instructed a colleague to falsely indicate that Frazer left the facility against the advice of his physicians and counselors, according to the complaint.  Clifford also advised her staff not to call police about the incident, the complaint said. Mt. Vernon Woman Charged In Alleged Neglect Of A Nursing Home Patient | The Mount Vernon Daily Voice

Monday, August 05, 2013

Attorney General Shutting Zanesville Nursing Home

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine and Ohio Department of Health Director Theodore Wymyslo, M.D., announced that they are working to close a nursing home in Zanesville.
The move to revoke Autumn Healthcare of Zanesville's license comes after a covert investigation by the Attorney General's Office found evidence of suspected patient neglect. Multiple ODH inspections also revealed ongoing patterns of substandard care at the 100-bed facility.
Autumn Healthcare of Zanesville 's license will be terminated in 60 days.
"In January, I reached out to the Ohio Department of Health to come up with a plan on how we could work together to aggressively go after nursing homes whose employees are providing inadequate care," said Attorney General DeWine. "It is important to point out that there are many good nursing homes in Ohio that provide excellent care. We are putting those that don't on notice that we are not afraid to take action."
ODH has recommended that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) also cease Medicare/Medicaid reimbursement to the facility

Attorney General Shutting Zanesville Nursing Home | WHIZ News:

Thursday, August 01, 2013

Assisted Living Expose shows dangers in Assisted Living for Seniors

August 1, 2013

Frontline, in association with Pro Publica is currently running a series on Assisted Living in the United States. Must reading for all families concerned about care and the prevention of abuse and neglect of our elder relatives.

Pro Publica

Ch 1  "Emerald City"
Ch 2 "They're not treating Mom Well"
Ch 3 "A Sinking Ship"
Ch 4 "Close the Back Door"

by Bernard Hamill
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Nursing Home Abuse

Monday, July 29, 2013

Preventing Elder Abuse: World Elder Abuse Awareness Day

 On June 15, 2006, the International Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse and the World Health Organization at the United Nations launched World Elder Abuse Awareness Day as an annual call to action for individuals, organizations, and communities concerned with senior rights. In the words of the National Center on Elder Abuse, “The purpose of WEAAD is to provide an opportunity for communities around the world to promote a better understanding of abuse and neglect of older persons by raising awareness of the cultural, social, economic and demographic processes affecting elder abuse and neglect.”

On WEAAD, this year and every year, communities are encouraged to hold events and fundraisers, and individuals are urged to volunteer for organizations that benefit seniors. Even a simple visit to an older neighbor, friend, or family member who lives alone can be empowering and encouraging—and it’s a concrete way to help with preventing elder abuse.
Preventing Elder Abuse: World Elder Abuse Awareness Day:

by Bernard Hamill
Nursing Home Abuse

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Nursing homes with higher proportion of Black residents provide lower care levels

"Nursing homes with a higher proportion of Black residents perform worse financially and provide lower-quality care than homes with few Black residents, finds a new study in Health Services Research.
The study's findings suggest that de facto segregation may exist within nursing homes because better performing nursing homes may selectively admit residents based on race and/or payer status, preferring private payers over those using Medicaid, whose users are disproportionately minority group members. Another reason for the segregation may be due to the fact that Black nursing home residents generally choose facilities within their communities.
"As policy makers develop initiatives to improve overall quality, they also need to incorporate solutions that will mitigate racial and ethnic disparities in nursing homes," says lead author Latarsha Chishom, Ph.D., assistant professor of health management and informatics at the University of Central Florida."
Nursing homes with higher proportion of Black residents perform worse financially, says study

Friday, July 19, 2013

Nurse struck off for rough handling and verbal abuse

 "A PENPARCAU nurse has been struck off the nursing register after a disciplinary panel ruled that she “put patients at unwarranted risk of harm”.
A Nursing and Midwifery Council hearing found 12 charges proven against June Parry, including claims of rough handling and verbal abuse of patients and intimidation of colleagues. Five further charges were not proven.
She has been removed from the nursing register for five years. The charges relate to periods between 2005 and 2010 when Mrs Parry was working first at Ystwyth Ward at Bronglais Hospital and then Hafan y Waun at Waunfawr.
The NMC panel heard that Mrs Parry quit her job at the hospital after allegations that she had made inappropriate comments about patients, including a claim she had said she would put a pillow over a patient’s face and wrap a cord around another patient’s neck."
Nurse struck off for rough handling and verbal abuse | News:

Monday, July 15, 2013

AG: Nursing home staff accused of beating, smothering patient

"Raquel Bouton, 43, of Mount Sinai and Laura Harper, 58, of Coram, were arrested Tuesday on the eight count indictment, which includes charges of second-degree assault, second-degree attempted assault, second-degree endangering the welfare of a vulnerable elderly person, as well as of endangering the welfare of an incompetent or physically disabled person and two counts of willful violations of health law. Bouton was additionally charged with first-degree falsifying business records. If convicted, the women both face up to seven years in prison.
According to the attorney general’s office Bouton, a licensed practical nurse and Harper, a personal care aide, assaulted an 88-year-old “incompetent and physically disabled resident” at the Woodhaven Adult Home in Port Jefferson Station on March 24, 2012."
AG: Nursing home staff accused of beating, smothering patient - Long Island Crime |

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Kindred Great Barrington MA


I received a call recently from a woman whose mother was in the Kindred nursing home and Rehab Center in Great Barrington, Massachusetts.

She claimed her mother suffered injuries on her arms. She believed her mother was hit by someone.
The woman stated she called the state department of public health (DPH)  to file a formal complaint.

This nursing home had a rating of 3 stars out of 5 on a recent web survey.

Our advice is always the same though: remove your loved one from a nursing home if you have concerns about their care or believe there has been neglect.

Our website has a free booklet explaining the rights of nursing home residents and is free at: and

by Bernard Hamill
Nursing Home Abuse

Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Former nursing home chief jailed over $100,000 theft from patients

 "A former Champaign nursing home administrator accused of stealing tens of thousands of dollars from residents in her care remained in the Champaign County jail Tuesday.
Pamela S. Britt, 55, was arrested last week at her home in Potomac on a warrant that had been issued June 12 by a Champaign County judge.
The former administrator at the Heartland Health Care Center, 309 E. Springfield Ave., C, is charged with 12 felony counts of financial exploitation of an elderly person, theft, theft by deception, and forgery.
The charges allege she stole about $100,000 from a total of 18 victims between January 2007 and May 2011 while she worked at Heartland Health Care.
The case is being prosecuted by the Illinois attorney general's office."
Former nursing home chief jailed over $100,000 theft from patients |

by Bernard Hamill

Nursing Home Abuse

Monday, July 08, 2013

Christopher House Worcester MA

I received a call today from a man whose mother is in the Christopher House nursing home in Worcester Massachusetts. It seems he found his mother wearing clothes that weren't hers and she had a cut on her elbow that staff could not explain. His mother suffers from Alzheimer's disease. He reiterated that on a prior occasion he was informed someone had been "in his mothers bed" by a nurse. He was concerned because the staff would not give him any answers and he was worried about her care. He mentioned the nursing home had a "low rating".

We generally do not get involved when the resident is still in the facility. Ombudsman, the state DPH and other resources are available for advocacy needs of current residents. Our advice is always the same though: remove your loved one from a nursing home if you have concerns about their care or believe there has been neglect.

Our website has a free booklet explaining the rights of nursing home residents and is free at: and

by Bernard Hamill
Nursing Home Abuse

Friday, July 05, 2013

Residents removed from Crawley nursing home over ‘safety concerns’ - Local - Crawley Observer

West Sussex County Council (WSCC) is removing 52 residents from a nursing home citing safety concerns.
The county council has terminated its contract with Oakhurst Grange Nursing Home, in Goffs Park Road, after it was found to be failing in its quality of care.
The Bupa care home, which cares for people with dementia, was given two warning notices to make urgent improvements by the Care Quality Commission in December last year.
A follow up inspection published in April found the care home was still failing.
A county council spokesman said there had been some improvement in the standard of care, but the council did ‘not have the confidence that the improvements will reach recognized adequate care standards within an acceptable time frame or be sustained’.
Amanda Rogers, county council director of adults’ services, said: “We have worked in partnership with the home’s management team for many weeks to help the service to improve so we are disappointed that standards are still so poor that residents’ health, safety and welfare are at risk.
Residents’ safety and wellbeing is our priority so, along with carers and families, we will be doing all we can to make their move as comfortable as possible, and to provide the support they need.Residents removed from Crawley nursing home over ‘safety concerns’ - Local - Crawley Observer

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Nursing home administrator faces sanctions in sex abuse case

The administrator of an Iowa nursing home where a woman was sexually abused by a resident is now facing licensing sanctions.

The Iowa Board of Nursing Home Administrators alleges that Susan Juilfs, who served as administrator of the Pomeroy Care Center from September 1983 to October 2011, is guilty of professional incompetence.

The board says that Juilfs should have known resident William Cubbage, who is now 84 years old, posed a threat to other residents of the home and that she failed to protect those residents from the threat.

A hearing on the matter is scheduled for Oct. 24. Juilfs, who is currently the administrator at Lakeside Lutheran Home in Emmetsburg, declined to comment on the board’s allegations.

The case is unusual in that the Iowa Board of Nursing Home Administrators rarely takes action against administrators for abuse or neglect in the homes they manage.Nursing home administrator faces sanctions in sex abuse case | The Des Moines Register |

Friday, June 28, 2013

Quincy Medical Center psychiatry unit cited for squalid conditions, patient neglect

Close to home: Our Quincy, Massachusetts Law Office is located only 1 mile from the Quincy Medical Center. Disturbingly, the Boston Globe reported today that state officials had temporarily halted admissions to their elder psychiatric ward.
"State inspectors found filthy conditions and patients left unattended on Quincy Medical Center’s psychiatric ward for seniors, prompting regulators to temporarily prohibit admissions to the unit last month"
The hospital fired at least two managers.
Inspectors made a surprise visit May 23, responding to concerns about the geriatric unit at the hospital, owned by Steward Health Care. Patients were largely ignored by nurses and other staff members and left in bed without covers and wearing only hospital gowns, inspectors found. Some complained of mean nursing staff members.
In one room, a woman in bed was covered in feces and said no one had answered her calls for help. She told inspectors that one nurse was unkind and that another staff member “told her she needed to take care of herself.”
“The patient in the bed next to her was almost cowering and very frightened,” said the report by the state Department of Mental Health. “The odor coming from this room could not have been missed by anyone in the hallway, yet no one was responding to the patient.”
The facility overall was squalid, with dirty floors, damaged furniture, and missing privacy curtains in patient rooms, inspectors found.
The state closed the unit to new admissions for about a week as the hospital began taking corrective actions. The action came to light this week after Globe inquiries.
Hospital leaders acknowledged serious problems on the unit. In a June 11 letter to the state, Daniel Knell, the Quincy Medical Center president, said the inspectors’ findings were “disturbing and concerning.” Several staff members were terminated, he wrote. Those remaining have gone through patient rights training, which included watching a four-minute video on empathy, and will have ongoing training.
“A change in culture among unit staff is paramount,” Knell wrote.
The hospital system has “responded with all of its resources” to the state findings, said Lizbeth Kinkead, licensing director at the state Department of Mental Health. But she will be watching for hospital administrators to demonstrate ongoing support for this and other psychiatric units within the Steward chain.
The leadership at the hospital “was a big part of my concern, really: Who was paying attention to this?” she said. “Who was looking at the functions of everybody, up and down the system?”
Quincy Medical Center psychiatry unit cited for squalid conditions, patient neglect - Health -

by Bernard Hamill
Nursing Home Abuse

Monday, June 24, 2013

Newport police investigating elder abuse claim

Newport Township police are investigating a report of abuse against a resident at a local nursing home.
Police were recently notified about the allegations and have been interviewing employees at Guardian Eldercare Center, 147 Old Newport St., to determine what happened, Newport Township police Chief Jeremy Blank said today. One instance of elder abuse has been reported, he said.
Blank declined to specify what the alleged abuse entailed, citing an ongoing investigation, but said the allegations were not sexual in nature.
The Guardian Eldercare Center released a statement saying administrators learned about an alleged incident of abuse on Wednesday and contacted police, as required by law.
“The facility is working in conjunction with local law enforcement and all other appropriate regulatory agencies to ensure ongoing resident safety,” the statement said. “Guardian Eldercare Center takes allegations of resident abuse very seriously and has a zero tolerance policy for any violation of resident rights.”
The statement did not address the nature of the alleged abuse, nor whether any staff members had been disciplined.
The center has had some troubles in the past, according to records from the Department of Health and Human Services’ Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.Newport Twp. police investigating elder abuse claim - News - Citizens' Voice

by Bernard Hamill
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Nursing Home Abuse

Rape in Nursing Homes

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Woman charged with abusing men at veterans home

 A woman has been charged with abusing four residents at a home for veterans in Montana, including three in a ward for people with dementia.
Susan Stablefeldt did not enter a plea when she was arraigned on Tuesday in District Court in Glendive. County officials said Thursday she does not yet have an attorney, and no phone listing could be found for her.
Authorities said the incidents occurred at the Eastern Montana Veteran's Home in Glendive between October and January.
Nursing Home Director Christy Kemp called police on Jan. 29 and told them she had received several complaints.
Co-workers told investigators that one man was held down with a knee on his arm and a hand across his face while being told to shut up. Court records allege Stablefeldt twisted one man's arm behind his back, punched another and slapped a fourth.

Woman charged with abusing men at veterans home - SFGate:

Tuesday, May 07, 2013

Nursing Home employee accused of exposing self

 A Carmichaels man is facing several charges after police said he inappropriately touched a co-worker at the nursing home he worked at.

According to police, a woman who worked at Golden Living Nursing Home in Waynesburg told authorities that William Everly Jr., 47, inappropriately touched her at the health care facility.

The woman said Everly also exposed himself to her and a female patient inside the patient’s room.

The executive director at Golden Living Nursing Home told Channel 11’s Jodine Costanzo that Everly has been fired, and he passed all background checks prior to being hired.

“It was a total shock and we weren’t anticipating it. If we would have had any suspicion of these behaviors, the employee wouldn’t have been here,” the executive director said.

Everly is charged with indecent assault, indecent exposure and harassment. He faces a preliminary hearing on May 2.Ex-nursing home employee accused of exposing self, touching... |

Pueblo nursing home hit with $3.7 million judgement for patient's death

A Pueblo nursing home was hit with a $3.7 million judgement Monday when a jury found its management and staff liable for the death of one of its rehabilitation patients. The jury found that negligence by Belmont Lodge Health Care Center led to the death of 88-year-old Janet Smith in May 2011.
Denver-based attorney David Levine represented Smith's daughter, Margaret, who sued after her mother's condition rapidly deteriorated resulting in her death shortly after entering Belmont Lodge for rehabilitation of two broken ankles in April 2011. Janet suffered from osteoporosis and broke both of her ankles in separate incidents, rendering her unable to walk. As a result, she was outfitted with a foley catheter so that she could urinate. Negligence related to the monitoring and care for that catheter by Belmont Lodge staff led to a severe urinary tract infection, resulting in Janet's death, Levine argued.
"The nurses failed to keep accurate records, the CNAs failed to keep accurate records, and then one of the records was doctored, falsified," Levine said. "It's not really what's in those records, it's what's not in those records," he said.
Margaret Smith says she started noticing a dramatic change in her mother's health on May 7, 2011. "When I tried to talk to her, she told me, 'I'm really tired. Why don't you just read and just let me sleep?'" Margaret had been at her mother's bedside in the days immediately prior and Janet was alert and communicative. Margaret noticed that the urine in the catheter bag had started turning darker and darker, yet no staff from Belmont Lodge came to empty it or check on it. The next day, May 8, 2011 -- Mother's Day -- Janet was found unresponsive in her room and was sent to Parkview Medical Center. Margaret says she was not notified and had arrived at Belmont Lodge to bring Mother's Day flowers to her mom, who served as a nurse in World War II and the Korean War.
"I walked in and a resident shouted to the nurse, 'Oh, God, the daughter's here,'" Margaret said. 
Janet awoke briefly while at Parkview and addressed her daughter directly. "She looked at me and said, 'I want to die,'" Margaret said. "After finding out that she had a urinary tract infection that had gone septic, which meant that it was in her blood -- it wasn't something that was just going to clear up -- I made the decision to honor her wishes and let her go."
Levine argued that incomplete and falsified record-keeping on Janet Smith by Belmont Lodge nurses and staff amounted to gross negligence. "The rules are that you're supposed to empty the (catheter) bag, clean the area, and monitor for signs of infection and there was no monitoring whatsoever," Levine said. "All you have to do is order a urinalysis and call the doctor and they didn't do either of those things."
Levine argued that long gaps between visits by nurses or staff compounded the negligence. "There are gaps of 19 hours, 22 hours, and 12 hours of no record of any CNA going in the room," Levine said.
Monday, a Pueblo jury returned with its judgement: $3.5 million in punitive damages against Belmont Lodge Health Care Center and $200,000 to be awarded to Margaret Smith for her pain and suffering.
"You don't want to be the person who sues somebody," Margaret said, adding that she never sought to profit from her mother's death, but rather sought to hold Belmont Lodge accountable. "I think that now I can probably start the proper grieving process and move on with my life," Margaret said.Pueblo nursing home hit with $3.7 million judgement for patient's death | | Colorado Springs | Pueblo |

Thursday, May 02, 2013

Nurse’s aide convicted of abusing patient

After a week-long jury trial in Lucas County Common Pleas Court, a former nurse’s aide was found guilty Friday of nursing home patient abuse for striking a patient with mental health problems at a local nursing home where she worked.

Tacarra Bryson, 31, of 10 Southard Ave. is to be sentenced May 15 by Judge Gary Cook on the charge, which carries a maximum penalty of 18 months in prison. After deliberating for nearly seven hours Thursday and Friday, the jury found Bryson guilty of punching a patient in the head while the patient was being restrained on the floor at Liberty West Nursing Center, 2051 Collingwood Blvd.Nurse’s aide convicted of abusing patient - Toledo Blade:

Sunday, April 28, 2013

$900,000 for death at Kirkland adult-family home

For 22 days, caregivers at a Kirkland adult-family home guarded a secret.
An elderly woman at Houghton Lakeview nursing home suffered from pressure sores that had burrowed to the bone. No one called her family. No one alerted a doctor.
The state of Washington harbored a secret, too.
Investigators had cited Houghton Lakeview 33 times for inadequate care and substandard conditions. Two caregivers were convicted felons, barred from such work. Two others had forged nursing credentials. The public was never warned — nor were the residents in the home.
By the time the woman was rushed to the emergency room, it was too late. Jean Rudolph, 87, a retired nursing educator who had Alzheimer's disease, died in 2008 from untreated pressure sores.
The state Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) and the owner's insurance company agreed to a $900,000 settlement this week with the Rudolph family.
This rare settlement reveals a state regulatory system torn between dual roles: booster of the industry as a way to control costs, as well as enforcer of its failings. With rising numbers of low-income seniors in need of long-term care, Washington and dozens of states are banking on these residential facilities as alternatives to more costly nursing homes.$900,000 for death at Kirkland adult-family home | Local News | The Seattle Times

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Costs of Nursing Home Care

In-home U.S. senior care costs $16-$26 per hour, or $150-$280 for 24-hour live-in care, while a nursing home costs $180-$400 a day, experts say., a website involving elder care, compiled information from more than 18,000 long-term care nursing centers as well as in-home senior care options. The options are easily searched by zip code or state.
Julie Northcutt, chief executive officer of, said many Americans do not realize the true cost of long-term care.
"Nursing home care has become the place for rehabilitation after a hospital stay, and seniors and their families often have not planned ahead for these costs, which Medicare does not cover," Northcutt said in a statement.
Medicare, the health insurance program for all seniors beginning at age 65, does not cover long-term care costs after 100 days; but Medicaid, for very low-income seniors, does cover nursing home costs but participants must meet a minimum annual income.
Senior medicaid care varies from state to state, but most states spend about one-half or more of their Medicaid budget on nursing home care or care for the elderly. Some patients "spend down" their bank accounts in order to qualify for Medicaid, Northcutt added.
Prices seniors and their families face include:
-- Nursing home costs range from $180-$400 a day or $5,400-$12,000 a month.
-- A private nursing home room can cost up to $493 a day or $14,790 a month.
-- Senior home care costs $16-$26 per hour for hourly care.
-- 24-hour live-in care ranges from $150- $280 per day.
-- Assisted living costs range from $2,500-$5,000 a month.
-- Continuing care retirement community on average costs a down payment of $250,000 with a $4,000 monthly rental fee. These facilities guarantee lifetime housing, social activities and increased levels of care including nursing home care.

by Bernard Hamill
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Thursday, April 18, 2013

Amgen will pay $25M to resolve kickback case including kickbacks to Kindred

The U.S. Department of Justice said Tuesday that biotech drugmaker Amgen Inc. will pay $24.9 million to resolve claims it paid kickbacks to increase sales of its anemia drug Aranesp.

The Justice Department said Amgen paid kickbacks to Omnicare and PharMerica Corp., which sell drugs to long-term care providers like nursing homes and hospitals, and Kindred Healthcare Inc., which runs long-term acute care hospitals and nursing and rehabilitation centers. It said Amgen wanted the companies to switch Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries to Aranesp from competing drugs and tried to get consultant pharmacists and nursing home staffers to encourage the use of Aranesp in patients who didn't have anemia associated with kidney failure.

Read more: Amgen will pay $25M to resolve kickback case | Modern Healthcare

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

$90 million verdict against a Charleston nursing home will stand

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — A $90 million verdict against a Charleston nursing home will stand for now after a judge denied the business owner's request for a new trial.
Kanawha County Circuit Judge Paul Zakaib Jr. ruled Wednesday that the verdict appropriately punished Heartland of Charleston's corporate owner, HCR Manor Care, for a history of intentionally short-staffing nursing homes to maximize profit, The Charleston Gazette ( ) reported Thursday.
Tom Douglas claimed in the lawsuit that his 87-year-old mother died of dehydration and complications stemming from her 19-day stay at Heartland of Charleston in 2009.
Manor Care lawyers raised several claims, including that the damages should have been subject to the state's $500,000 medical malpractice cap. They said they will appeal to the West Virginia Supreme Court.
"This is not a surprise. These rulings are consistent with those made during trial," Heartland lawyer Ben Bailey said in a release. "We believe they are wrong on the facts and wrong on the law."
The verdict was reduced from $91.5 million to $90.5 million soon after the 2011 trial after Zakaib ruled a small portion of the damage award fell under the $500,000 medical malpractice cap.
The lawsuit sparked a bill that is up for final passage Saturday that would place a limit on the amount nursing homes would be forced to pay if sued by placing them under the protections of the 2003 law that placed limits on medical malpractice lawsuits, including a $500,000 cap on non-economic damages.
If passed the law would not apply to the Heartland case. Even if it did, it would not affect the vast majority of the verdict because $80 million was awarded for punitive damages not covered by the legislation.
During her brief stay at the nursing home, the woman suffered head trauma from several falls and was confined to a wheelchair. She formed sores in her mouth that generated dead tissue that doctors had to scrape away with a scalpel, Zakaib wrote in his ruling.
Experts said during the trial that staffers at the nursing home also failed to provide the woman with basic needs, like food and water, which had been a contributing factor in her death.
"It is our hope that this will set an example," Douglas' lawyer, Mike Fuller, said of the verdict. "The community of West Virginia will not accept nursing home residents having to die from dehydration because of a corporation's failure to provide even a cup of water."
Heartland officials have said that the woman's death was a result of dementia, which is the stated cause of death on her death certificate. They also pointed out that she died 18 days after leaving Heartland.
Heartland had a history of violations, including temporarily losing its Medicare and Medicaid funding in 2011 after state inspectors found dozens of violations. In one instance, nurses' aides failed to assess a demential patient's head wound for several hours.
Zakaib also cited a 2009 survey that found the home was dangerously short-staffed.
One nursing care staffer, Tara Boweles, testified during the trial that conditions in the home were "horrible," saying: "I wouldn't put my dog there." She said patients sometimes would lay in their own urine and feces for hours.
Staff supervisor Beverly Crawford testified that employees feared getting fired for reporting patient neglect.
Zakaib found that short staffing issues arose as the company sought to keep margins high by hiring as few nurses' aides as possible. Tax forms presented at trial listed more than $4 billion in revenue in 2009, including $75 million in outright profit.
"Indeed, to accomplish punishment and deterrence of such a wealthy company, a punitive damage award must be necessarily high," Zakaib said in his ruling. "This verdict sends a clear 'deterrence' message to a multi-billion dollar nursing home corporation that its misconduct will not be tolerated in West Virginia."

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Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Investigators: Wisconsin’s worst nursing homes

Some of the worst nursing homes in Wisconsin continue to violate state and federal regulations designed to protect our sickest and most vulnerable seniors. And a FOX6 Investigation shows you where they are, so you can make an informed decision before placing your loved one in a troubled nursing home.
FOX6 Investigators: Wisconsin’s worst nursing homes | – Milwaukee News & weather from WITI Television FOX6:
When Richard Witt was a younger man, he had the talent of an Olympic figure skater and the good looks to land any girl. But there was only one girl he wanted. He married Kathy Witt on November 23rd, 1963.
“It was the day after President Kennedy was assassinated,” Richard Witt recalls. “It’s a terrible way to remember that.”They spent the next 44 years raising a family in Hartford, Wisconsin, where Richard was elected mayor in 1983. But politics were never Kathy’s thing. She preferred to be outdoors, interacting with nature and playing with her grandchildren. “It was a good life,” Witt says. The good life got harder when Kathy was diagnosed with cancer in 1990. “The doctors at that time were telling me that she had maybe two weeks to live,” Witt said. But Kathy was a fighter. She survived ovarian cancer. Then brain cancer. Cervical cancer. Spine cancer. And, finally, breast cancer. Five cancers in 18 years and Kathy beat them all. She had fallen from her bed and struck her head on the floor. She was flown to Froedtert Hospital. The next day, Richard made the heart-wrenching decision to remove his wife from life support. “And the nurse came in and said, ‘Mr. Witt she’s gone,’” Witt describes, his voice quivering, tears welling up in his eyes. What happened at Mayville Nursing and Rehabilitation would become the subject of a wrongful death lawsuit and testimony before the Wisconsin Senate. “The alarm did go off on the nurses desk, so she did try to get someone to help her,” Witt said during his testimony in January of 2011. Witt told state lawmakers his wife wasn’t supposed to get up without assistance and a blood pressure check. But when she pressed the nurse call button that day, nobody came. So she tried to get up on her own. “One nurse walking a patient to another room happened to notice her sitting on the edge of her bed, yelled back down the hallway stating that Kathy was sitting on the edge of the bed, and the other nurse said, ‘I’ll get there as soon as I can,’” Witt told the Senators. But by the time staff members got there, Kathy was already on the floor. “Granted you have a lot of patients down these halls, but that is not my problem,” Witt now declares. “That is your problem.” The wrongful death lawsuit was dismissed after an out-of-court settlement, but in the years since Kathy’s death, Mayville Nursing and Rehab has been repeatedly cited by state and federal inspectors for providing residents with poor quality care. A FOX6 investigation found that no other Wisconsin nursing home has been fined more money for health violations the past three years than Mayville.

by Bernard Hamill
Nursing Home Abuse

Friday, April 05, 2013

Nurse fired for reporting Abuse

Nurse Annie O'Malley says she was fired from the MetroHealth Prentiss Center nursing home for reporting what she believed to be abuse inside the facility.
"I don't think Tina or the Prentiss Center wants to have any more bad publicity," OMalley said.
Tina Szatala is the nursing home's chief administrator. O'Malley was referring to her and the series of reports that Investigator Tom Meyer aired in June 2011 regarding the abuse of Esther Piskor, 78, a resident suffering from Alzheimers.
O'Malley says she contacted the state about an incident in September of last year regarding a 90-year-old resident who was alone in her room, screaming and crying for help. The resident needed assistance to go to the bathroom.
O'Malley says when nurses' aides didn't respond, the resident decided to climb out of bed and into a wheelchair.
"The bed was in the high position. 4 rails up. This woman crawled out of bed, which she could have killed herself, getting out of bed," said O'Malley

by Bernard Hamill
Nursing Home Abuse

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Need for Nursing Home reform

On the lawn of the state Health Department, flanked by the daughters of a 96-year-old woman who was physically abused by two Oklahoma City nursing home aides last year, Wes Bledsoe said the department should amp up its inspections and investigations process immediately.

Eryetha Mayberry sat in a wheelchair and suffered from dementia when two nurses aides at Quail Creek Nursing Home and Rehabilitation Center were arrested on abuse complaints last April.
Mayberry's daughters set up a hidden video camera after they noticed some of their mom's personal items missing. But instead of catching a thief, the tape revealed two women pushing the women's mother and gagging her with gloved hands.
One of the women, Lucy Gakunga, 24, is now serving a prison sentence at Mabel Bassett Correctional Center in McLoud. Her co-defendant, Caroline Kaseke, 29, has not been convicted and remains at large.
Bledsoe said it is unconscionable that the state Health Department is not investigating the nursing home and said it reflects the department's attitude about this type of abuse.
He said the department cited only six of the state's 300-plus nursing homes for failing to protect residents from abuse in the past 31/2 years, despite 57 such citations in the 31/2 years before that.
“That, to me, is scandalous,” Bledsoe said.

The state investigated more than 1,240 complaints at nursing homes last year alone, and cited 1,000 of them for deficiencies, Huser said.
Twenty citations have been issued against nursing homes since May 2009 for failure to protect residents from abuse.

by Bernard Hamill
Nursing Home Abuse

Monday, March 25, 2013

Negligent Nursing Homes Grab 5 Billion Tax Dollars in One Year

 If members of both polital parties bothered to read a report released last week by the Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General, they might find some common ground in saving American taxpayers money on Medicare.

The Inspector General report reveals that in 2009 nursing home conglomerates bilked U.S. taxpayers to the tune of more than $5 billion for care that by all legal definitions was substandard at best, negligent at worst. A full 37 percent of nursing homes across America receiving Medicade reimbursements did not meet plan-of-care standards for residents

Negligent Nursing Homes Grab 5 Billion Tax Dollars in One Year:

by Bernard Hamill
Nursing Home Abuse

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

MRSA rampant in Southern California nursing homes, caused by understaffing

A new study shows a super bug is rampant in nursing homes.

Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA, is a staph infection that is resistant to several common antibiotics.

The germ was found in 20 of the 22 Southern California nursing homes examined in the study.

The nursing homes agreed to be in the study only if their names weren't released.

Researchers at the University of California, Irvine, swabbed the noses of nursing home residents between October 2008 and May 2011.

The study's lead researcher said these facilities need more nursing home infection control interventions.

Marian Hollingsworth told Team 10 she saw how quickly a loved one can contract MRSA.

Her father contracted MRSA after just a day inside a San Diego nursing home. A nurse called and told her about the infection.

"I found out later that by law, a doctor was supposed to call and inform us of the infection and we were supposed to get information on how to limit the spread and we never did," Hollingsworth said.

MRSA is spread through contact -- either by touching someone with the germ or touching an object with it.

"He was kept near the front desk in a wheelchair a lot. So everyone who went in and out of the facility was exposed to him," said Hollingsworth.

10News - MRSA rampant in Southern California nursing homes, says new study - - News

by Bernard Hamill
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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Nursing home giant guilty in wrongful death suit - Understaffing and cost cutting

A Sacramento Superior Court jury has returned verdicts of wrongful death and elder abuse against the nation's largest assisted living company.
The Sacramento Bee reports ( the trial now enters the punitive-damages phase for Emeritus Corp, a Seattle-based company with annual revenue of $1 billion.
A suit was filed on behalf of Joan Boice, an 82-year-old resident with Alzheimer's disease who died shortly after leaving an Emeritus facility in Auburn five years ago. When she left, the newspaper says, Boice had at least four major bedsores that were listed as significant factors in her cause of death.
Plaintiffs attorneys argued that understaffing and lack of training represented a strategy on Emeritus' part to cut costs.
An Emeritus spokesperson says the company stands behind the quality of care it provides.

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Nursing home giant guilty in wrongful death suit - AP State News - The Sacramento Bee

by Bernard Hamill

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Thursday, March 14, 2013

Need for Full Time Nursing Home Dr's

Jonathan M. Evans is a geriatric physician. A firm believer in onsite physicians at nursing homes, he explained, “The thing that matters most is being there – being there for patients when they're sick; being there for families when they're in need; being there for staff to provide support and ongoing education. You can't be part of a team if you're not present.”

Should the nursing home physician communicate directly with patients and family members rather than through the staff? Evans’ answer is -- “Why the hell not?”

Evans pointed out, "A doctor should always communicate with a patient directly unless a patient is not able to make medical decisions and has a medical proxy to guard confidentiality.” In the absence of a full-time physician, dementia patients are at a disadvantage. The doctor reads charts, talks to staff, talks to patient, but fails to communicate with family.
If a physician talks with family rather than just reading charts, patients can be helped more effectively. In the absence of a full time physician, there is a disconnect.

by Bernard Hamill 
Nursing Home Abuse

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Ct Nursing home residents called 'monkeys,' left hungry

A Litchfield nursing home has been ordered to hire a new manager, improve resident care and pay a $2,000 fine after findings that administrators left residents hungry, denied them information about their personal finances and openly referred to them as "monkeys."
Multiple residents of Fernwood Rest Home Inc., a 68-bed facility, told inspectors from the state Department of Public Health that administrators would tell them they had to "go shopping to feed the monkeys," a state DPH report says.
A staff member of the nursing home confirmed complaints from residents that administrators would put a chain across the dining room door while the staff was making a "gourmet breakfast for themselves," and would instruct staff members to "keep the monkeys out" of the room while they were eating.

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Thursday, February 28, 2013

Lawsuit filed against nursing home for an alleged sexual assault

A lawsuit has been filed against at Watertown CT. nursing home after one of the patients was allegedly sexually assaulted.
The woman died a few weeks after the incident and her family is now hoping to get enough money to cover funeral costs.
While the criminal investigation remains open, a family member of the alleged victim, a woman now deceased, has filed a civil suit.
The complaint claims that around July 17, 2010, an elderly woman who lived at the Apple Rehab Bunker Hill facility in Watertown, was sexually assaulted by an unidentified person.
The attack supposedly happened in her bedroom, but does not specify if the suspect was an employee, guest, or another resident.
The family argues there was "negligence and carelessness" by Apple Health Care.

In this complaint, a family member of the victim claims the nursing home or rehab facility failed to protect the victim from sexual assault, failed to provide adequate security, and failed to report the assault to family members as well as police.
But a spokesperson for Apple Health care says, "Apple Rehab's policy includes a full investigation into the facts and findings and continues to commit full resources to uncover the facts which continue to unfold."
Meanwhile, the family is asking for Apple Health care to pay more than $15,000 to cover the costs of medical and funeral costs. The family claims because of the reported incident here, the woman suffered a fear of sexually transmitted diseases, conscious pain and suffering, severe emotional distress and eventually death.
The criminal investigation to this is ongoing by the Watertown Police Department and the civil litigation will be held at Waterbury Superior Court.

by Bernard Hamill 

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