Connecticut Nursing Homes Fined For Residents’ Deaths, Care Lapses

March 14, 2013
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The state Department of Public Health has fined a dozen nursing homes in recent months for lapses in patient care, including the deaths of residents at homes in Bridgeport and Norwalk.

Bridgeport Manor in Bridgeport was fined $1,440 in December for failing to provide a resident with psychiatric services and adequate supervision, DPH records show. The resident was frequently observed playing with privacy curtains at the home. On Nov. 27, 2012, the resident was found with a privacy curtain wrapped around the neck and upper body and died two days later.

In an unrelated case last year, Bridgeport Manor was fined $650 when a resident with a traumatic brain injury struck the side of his or her head on a headboard, sustaining a cut.

In February, Paradigm Healthcare Center of Norwalk was fined $1,230 in connection with the case of a mentally ill resident who choked on food that had been left on a tray on Dec. 7, 2012. The resident had “copious amounts of food obstructing the airway,” sustained a brain injury and went into cardiac arrest, records show. The resident died a week later when life support was discontinued, DPH records show.

Jonathan Neagle, a court-appointed receiver, said the home was under state receivership when the incident happened. “This accident clearly was an accident, and all the policies and procedures in place have been reinforced to prevent any further incidents,’’ he said.

Bridgeport Manor officials could not be reached for comment.

The other citations, according to DPH records, were:

• Lord Chamberlain Manor Nursing & Rehabilitation in Stratford was cited twice and fined a total of $1,510 on Dec. 4, 2012 for lapses in care. One resident was missing for two and half hours in the home before being found alone “trembling and crying.” One resident broke a leg in May 2012 after sliding out of a wheelchair and investigators concluded the home failed to prevent the injury. In November 2012, another resident slid off a shower chair and broke an ankle.

• Masonicare Health Care Center of Wallingford was fined $1,420 in January for neglect of a resident with Parkinson’s disease. A nurse’s aide did not clean up the incontinent resident and made a vulgar comment about the resident to another aide, records show. The aide was fired.

• Manchester Manor Health Care Center in Manchester was fined $1,280 in January when investigators learned that a nurse’s aide had slapped a resident on the hip in July 2011. The aide denied hitting the person but admitted to being “rough during care and shouting at the resident,” who was not injured, records show.

• The Summit at Plantsville was fined $1,160 in February for not properly monitoring a resident who had a wrist splint. According to an inspection on Jan. 25, the resident developed a pressure ulcer and needed antibiotics and the facility failed to follow its own care procedures.

• Paradigm Healthcare Center of Waterbury was fined $1,160 in January in connection with an incident in which a resident with dementia was cut on the forehead during a fall. The state concluded the facility did not have measures in place to safely transfer the resident to a toilet.

• Pines of Bristol Center for Nursing was fined $1,160 in January in connection with a 2012 incident in which a resident with Alzheimer’s fell and broke a hip. State investigators determined that an assessment of the resident’s likelihood to fall was not completed when she was admitted on Oct. 5 but was filed on Oct. 23, the day she fell.

• Fox Hill Center in Rockville was fined $1,160 in December for an April 2012 incident in which a resident with Alzheimer’s broke a wrist after falling when left alone in a bathroom. Investigators concluded the resident should not have been left unattended.

• Apple Rehab Guilford was fined $1,090 in January in connection with 2012 incidents in which two residents broke hips. One resident fell after being left alone in a bathroom despite being considered a high risk to fall.

• Bayview Health Care in Waterford was fined $1,020 in January for a November 2012 incident in which a nurse’s aide shoved a washcloth in the mouth of a resident with dementia and pinched the resident’s nose three times. That aide was fired, along with another aide who witnessed the incident but did not intervene out of fear of retaliation from the first aide.

• Salmon Brook Center in Glastonbury was fined $360 in January in connection with an April 2012 incident in which a nurse’s aide was verbally abusive to a resident with dementia and did not clean up the incontinent resident.

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3 Responses to Connecticut Nursing Homes Fined For Residents’ Deaths, Care Lapses

  1. guest on March 14, 2013 at 7:23 pm

    We shouldn’t be surprised at the behavior of nurse’s aides. The state has made that profession one of the big ones for jail re-entry programs. women leaving prison are encouraged to become certified as nurse’s aides.

    I am all for community reintegration but think it is preposterous and negligent to pick a profession like that instead of starting out unskilled returning criminals as janitors or something where they can be tested over time without exposure to vulnerable people who are powerless to help themselves.

    the state of Connecticut is run by this way. It is horrid

  2. americanflyerMI on March 15, 2013 at 7:03 am

    There’s no excuse for the abuse violations. However due to poor staffing in the pursuit of profits I can see how residents could be left alone in bathrooms etc. What does an aide do when they have 9 or more residents to care for? The administration staff won’t come out of their offices to help. They can have one resident in a bathroom, and an alarm goes off down the hall telling them that another high fall risk resident is getting up. What choice does the aide have in this very common situation? By the way I’ve worked in health care for many years. Finally it’s preposterous to believe that nursing homes would hire someone found guilty of felonies, theft, or assaultive crimes. For one all facilities are required by law to do background checks, and to access the states CNA registry.

  3. paul on March 18, 2013 at 5:34 am

    More nursing home stories this month. The truth is this is business as usual with the fines not amounting to anything that produces change. Some state officials will say we want facilities to put money into care but show us…where is the transparency? There has been a highlight given to neglect of the developmental population in one series. The truth is that despite the coverage given, this population actually has its own state department, independent advocacy, and is still suffering neglect in care. No one is paying as close attention to what happens to elderly who are subject to all the same problems, and whom the state is proposing to spread across a variety of settings (like the DD population) without reform or even assessment of the complaint process, protections, and rights. Does the Department of Health truly have any transparency or accountability in the way it administers the homes. That’s an uncovered story. It’s not a mystery why this stuff is happening one need only look a little while back. (2008-9) This is a national issue and will eventually get the public attention it deserves, but I wonder if it will before the tsunami of aging population hits, and lots of needless suffering.

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