Nursing Homes Are Required to Report Injuries, but Do They?
At Beaumont Rehabilitation and Skilled Learning Center in Westborough, Massachusetts, 89-year-old Westminster resident Betty Ford Crane fell from her personal recliner on July 29, 2015, sustaining a head injury; she was then characterized by a nurse the day after the fall to be “lethargic, very unresponsive, and had great difficulty keeping foods, liquids, and medication in her mouth”. However, a physician was not notified of her condition until she died on Aug. 7, 2015.
Beaumont is currently prohibited to train nursing assistants until Dec. 20, 2017.
At Wingate Nursing Home in Lowell, 23-year-old nursing aid Sabrina Costa was charged with assault and battery on a person 60 years of age or older while her co-worker, 22-year-old Kala Lopez, had been charged with permitting abuse on an elder or disabled person after they allegedly filmed inappropriate videos of dementia patients and uploaded them on Snapchat in August 2015.
In 2014, Massachusetts listed around 55 cases of abuse, neglect, and misappropriation that has happened in nursing homes all around the state.
Department of Public Health spokesman Scott Zoback said that it is rquired by both the federal and the state government that a nursing home should notify the resident’s family members if said resident has been involved in an accident that has resulted in the injury, or any untoward incident that would elicit concern from the family members. However, Zoback became vague in the matter of explaining to family members why a resident lost his life, especially if such death was due to a negligence on the part of the nursing home staff.
The website of Crowe & Mulvey, LLP says that Healthcare Reform Statute of 2012 – Massachusetts General Law Chapter 231 Section 60L requires nursing home operators to apologize to residents and their family should the nursing home facility make a transgression against the resident that proved to be detrimental to his/her welfare.