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Accessible Space, Inc.’s assisted living facility neglect deprives resident of anti-seizure medication and causes resident’s death

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Neglect

Accessible Space, Inc.’s assisted living facility neglect deprives resident of anti-seizure medication and causes resident’s death

By Kosieradzki Smith Law Firm

July 22, 2014

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) has completed its investigation of neglect concerns at the ASI Metro 4, aka Accessible Space, Inc., an assisted living facility in St. Paul, Minnesota.  A complaint was filed with the MDH alleging that neglect occurred when the facility’s resident did not receive prescribed medications for nine days, resulting in a seizure. The MDH investigated the matter and found that neglect occurred when the client missed 19 doses of a Phenobarbital, a scheduled anticonvulsant medication, for ten consecutive days and had a seizure lasting 15 minutes.  The resident required emergency care and died the next day.  The death certificate identified respiratory failure related to a seizure as the cause of death.

According to the MDH investigation, the resident was in the Accessible Space, Inc. facility with a diagnosis of seizure disorder and multiple sclerosis.  The resident had cognitive impairment with decision making and required total assistance with medication set up and administration. The resident’s seizure disorder was well maintained with the use of medication and had not had a seizure in several years.  The facility’s mediation administration record showed that the facility staff had failed to administer the resident’s anticonvulsant medication for ten days prior to the hospitalization.

The MDH investigation also revealed that the Accessible Space, Inc. assisted living facility also failed to administer three doses of the anticonvulsant medication to the resident three months earlier, in December, and had failed to administer a drug for a urinary tract infection in January.

The MDH determined that the facility is responsible for neglect of the facility’s resident.  [Case no. HL25489002]

The Minneapolis Star Tribune reports that “This marks the second time in nearly two years that Accessible Space has been found responsible for a serious medication error. In 2012, a male resident was found “gray and pale and dazed” on the floor of his apartment after staffers set up his medications incorrectly. State investigators found that the man had not received two prescribed drugs, a pain reliever and an antihistamine, for three days. He was transferred to the hospital on the fourth day with “an altered mental status,” ccording to a June 2012 investigation report. The Department of Health cited the operators for allowing an unlicensed staff person without adequate training to schedule medications for the resident.”

The Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm represents clients in cases involving catastrophic injury caused by nursing homes and other care facilities that fail to provide proper care. We have extensive experience representing clients in cases involving care facilities that fail to properly care for residents with seizure disorders and that fail to provide residents with essential medications. If you believe your loved one has been harmed due neglect or abuse in a nursing home or other care facility, take action and contact the Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm online or call us toll-free at (877) 552-2873 to set up a no-cost, no-obligation
consultation.

Medicare Probe Reveals Continuing Widespread Problem of Patient Injuries

By Kosieradzki Smith Law Firm

July 3, 2014

A recent Medicare study reveals an epidemic of patient injuries sustained in American hospitals. The most common injury to acquire while under the care of a hospital is an infection. Medicare will begin a program of sanctioning the worst performing quarter of American hospitals starting this year. Despite the success some hospitals have had in their efforts towards harm reduction, infections are still all too common. According to an estimate by the Center for Disease Control, 75,000 patients died of hospital-acquired infections in 2011.

Hospital Acquired Conditions (HACs) are usually infections that develop as the result of improper care. A common HAC is an infection developed from a catheter, whether said catheter is used to administer medication directly to the blood stream or to remove urine from the bladder. Another common HAC that threatens patients are the avoidable injuries such as bedsores, hip fractures, blood clots, or accidental lung punctures.

For the full story on Medicare’s investigation and response click here.

The Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm represents clients in cases involving catastrophic injury caused by care facilities that fail to provide proper care. If you believe your loved one has been harmed due neglect or abuse in a care facility, take action and contact the Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm online or call us toll-free at (877) 552-2873 to set up a no-cost, no-obligation consultation.

Neglect at Faribault Care Center Results in Resident Developing Cellulitis

By Kosieradzki Smith Law Firm

July 2, 2014

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) has completed its investigation of neglect concerns at the Faribault Care Center, a nursing home in Faribault, Minnesota.  A complaint was filed with the MDH alleging that neglect of care had caused a resident to develop cellulitis. The MDH also investigated additional complaints alleging that residents were not receiving requisite assistance with eating, dressing, and grooming and that the bathrooms were not clean. The MDH investigated the matter and found that the facility staff had failed to perform wound care as ordered by the physician. The resident was hospitalized with necrotic tissue and sepsis. The facility was additionally determined to be deficient in incontinence care, infection control, environmental sanitation, and resident grooming. The MDH determined that the facility responsible for neglect of the resident.  [Case no. H5098066]

Click here to read our previous blog about the Faribault Care Center and its history of deficiencies. Medicare rates nursing homes, including this 55-bed nursing home facility.  Medicare assigned an overall rating to the Faribault Care Center as a “much below average” facility.  In addition, Medicare assigned a “much below average” rating to the nursing home based on the government’s health inspections of the facility.

The Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm represents clients in cases involving catastrophic injury caused by nursing homes and other care facilities that fail to provide proper care. If you believe your loved one has been harmed due neglect or abuse in a nursing home or other care facility, take action and contact the Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm online or call us toll-free at (877) 552-2873 to set up a no-cost, no-obligation consultation.

Resident of York Garden Assisted Living Facility Abused by Care Staff

By Kosieradzki Smith Law Firm

July 2, 2014

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) has completed its investigation of abuse concerns at the York Garden, an assisted living facility in Edina, Minnesota.  A complaint was filed with the MDH alleging that a client at York Garden was abused by a caretaker and did not receive appropriate care. The MDH investigated the matter and found that the caregiver on at least two occasions spoke to the client in a loud, critical, and derogatory manner. The caregiver repeatedly insulted and demeaned the client who suffers from dementia. The caregiver also failed to escort the client to meals resulting in an unsafe weight loss. The MDH determined that the care giver is responsible for abuse of the facility’s resident.  [Case no. HL27800003]

The Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm represents clients in cases involving catastrophic injury caused by nursing homes and other care facilities that fail to provide proper care. If you believe your loved one has been harmed due neglect or abuse in a nursing home or other care facility, take action and contact the Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm online or call us toll-free at (877) 552-2873 to set up a no-cost, no-obligation consultation.

Blaine Assisted Living Facility Neglects Resident’s Need for Medication

By Kosieradzki Smith Law Firm

June 30, 2014

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) has completed its investigation of neglect concerns at the Blaine White Pine, an assisted living facility in Blaine, Minnesota.  A complaint was filed with the MDH alleging that a client failed to receive a prescribed medication for one month. It is also alleged that the staff responsible for the medication was not adequately trained. The MDH investigated the matter and found that the client, who has been diagnosed with dementia, depression, recurrent urinary tract infections, and coronary artery disease, did not receive their prescribed mirtazapine for 30 days.  The MDH determined that the facility is responsible for of the facility’s resident.  [Case no. HL26857003]

The Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm represents clients in cases involving catastrophic injury caused by nursing homes and other care facilities that fail to provide proper care. If you believe your loved one has been harmed due neglect or abuse in a nursing home or other care facility, take action and contact the Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm online or call us toll-free at (877) 552-2873 to set up a no-cost, no-obligation consultation.

Neglect at Augustana Nursing Home Sends Resident to Emergency Room for Head Injury

By Kosieradzki Smith Law Firm

June 29, 2014

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) has completed its investigation of neglect concerns at the Augustana Health Care Center of Minneapolis, a nursing home in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  A complaint was filed with the MDH alleging that neglect occurred when a resident fell and sustained a head injury. The resident was non-ambulatory and required total assistance of two staff members and a mechanical lift for transfers. The MDH investigated the matter and found that, on the day of the fall, the employee left resident unsupervised in the room with the patient’s bed at waist height with no precautionary safety measures in place. [Case no. H5242090]

For more information about the Augustana Health Care Center in Minneapolis, click here to read our previous blog about this nursing home.

The Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm represents clients in cases involving catastrophic injury caused by nursing homes and other care facilities that fail to provide proper care. If you believe your loved one has been harmed due neglect or abuse in a nursing home or other care facility, take action and contact the Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm online or call us toll-free at (877) 552-2873 to set up a no-cost, no-obligation consultation.

Mark Kosieradzki Quoted in Article about Nursing Home Blamed in Resident’s Fatal Fall

By Kosieradzki Smith Law Firm

June 14, 2014

A article by investigative reporter, Chris Serres, published in the Minneapolis Star Tribune, reveals:

  • Maple Manor Health Care & Rehabilitation, a nursing home in Rochester, Minnesota, was found responsible for neglect after it failed to properly maintain mechanical lifts, causing a resident to fall from a harness and die in March.  Click here to see our blog about the Minnesota Department of Health’s investigative report .
  • This 80-bed nursing home failed to implement safety precautions after experiencing ongoing problems with safety catches popping off a mechanical lift for moving patients called an EZ Lift. “The facility had no records of any inspections or maintenance performed on the lifts.”
  • “The resident, who suffered from severe dementia, was being transferred from a bed to a wheelchair when the transfer harness slipped, and the resident fell 4 feet from the harness. The safety catch, which secures the transfer harness on the lift, was missing. The resident suffered fractures of the spine and a scalp laceration from the resulting fall and died five days later at a hospital.”
  • “Maple Manor had experienced problems with safety catches popping off its mechanical lifts for six to nine months before the resident’s death, state investigators found. ‘The facility failed to implement a system to reduce avoidable accidents with EZ lift mechanical devices,’ the Department of Health wrote in its report.”

The Star Tribune article reports further that:

  • the “misuse of mechanical lifts has been the cause of numerous deaths and injuries at senior homes across the nation. The lifts contain straps and harnesses that are needed to keep the patient safely in place during transfers. When these are not attached properly before the lifts are activated, frail and elderly people can suffer fatal falls. In other cases, the lifts have tipped over when the move is done improperly.”
  • “There have been at least four deaths at senior homes in Minnesota involving mechanical lifts since 2010. In 2012, workers at an Eden Prairie nursing home failed to check that all of the loops on a sling were attached to a mechanical lift. The resident fell to the floor, suffered a collapsed lung, and developed respiratory and renal failure before dying three days later at a hospital, according to a Department of Health report.”
  • “The death marks at least the fifth time this year that a senior home in Minnesota has been found responsible by state regulators for neglect following the death of an elderly resident.”

“These devices are simple, but they need to be operated correctly,” said Mark Kosieradzki, a Plymouth attorney who specializes in cases of nursing home neglect and abuse. “We see over and over again that facilities cut corners in operating lifts and people die.”

The Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm represents clients in cases involving catastrophic injury caused by nursing homes and other care facilities that fail to provide proper care. If you believe your loved one has been harmed due neglect or abuse in a nursing home, take action and contact the Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm online or call us toll-free at (877) 552-2873 to set up a no-cost, no-obligation consultation.

 

Neglect Results in Death at Nursing Home in Rochester, Minnesota

By Kosieradzki Smith Law Firm

June 14, 2014

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) has completed its investigation of neglect concerns at the Maple Manor Health and Rehab nursing home in Rochester, Minnesota. A complaint was filed with the department alleging that a resident of the facility fell and broke her neck. This later resulted in the resident’s death. The department investigated the matter and found that the resident slipped from a transfer machine. The machine’s safety net was installed. The resident fell four feet to the ground and his/her head hit the ground and lost consciousness for approximately one minute. This resulted in the fracture of one of the resident’s upper vertebra. The resident died three days later. [Case no. H5409027]

Medicare rates nursing homes, including this 81-bed nursing home facility. Medicare has assigned an overall rating to Maple Manor as a “below average facility.” In addition, Medicare has assigned a health inspection rating of “much below average.” Deficiencies cited by Medicare include the facility’s failure to make sure services provided by the nursing home meet professional standards of quality, failure to provide care by qualified persons, and failure to assist those residents who need total help with eating/drinking, grooming and personal and oral hygiene, among other failures.

The Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm represents clients in cases involving catastrophic injury caused by nursing homes and other care facilities that fail to provide proper care. If you believe your loved one has been harmed due neglect or abuse in a nursing home, take action and contact the Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm online or call us toll-free at (877) 552-2873 to set up a no-cost, no-obligation consultation.

VIdell Healthcare’s Troubled Nursing Home Operations

By Kosieradzki Smith Law Firm

June 9, 2014

Minnesota Public Radio reports that the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) has cited the Camden Care Center for 47 health and safety violations, including at least two that inspectors found were “likely to cause serious injury, harm, impairment or death to a resident.” The nursing home cares for about 67 patients, many of whom have behavioral issues including psychiatric disorders, dementia or substance abuse, according to the agency’s filing with the court.

Volunteers of America – National Services has taken over management of the Camden Care Center. By law, the state’s receivership of the facility can’t extend past 18 months.

The MPR report revealed that, according to the MDH spokesperson, “persistent problems at the facility started soon after Seattle-based Videll Healthcare began managing it in 2012.” MPR reports that VIdell Healthcare “is in the process of discontinuing its management over all four remaining facilities” in Minnesota. MPR reports, “There have been similar reports of problems at other Videll facilities, specifically in Massachusetts,” citing an article in the Boston Globe.

To see our earlier related blog regarding Camden Care Center, click here.

The Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm represents clients in cases involving catastrophic injury caused by nursing homes that fail to provide proper care, including nursing homes that have gone into receivership like the Camden Care Center. If you believe your loved one has been harmed due neglect or abuse in a nursing home, take action and contact the Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm online or call us toll-free at (877) 552-2873 to set up a no-cost, no-obligation consultation.

Minnesota Nursing Home Cited for Resident Entrapped in Bed-rail

By Kosieradzki Smith Law Firm

June 4, 2014

The Minnesota Department of Health has substantiated the occurrence of neglect at the Elders Home nursing home in New York Mills, Minnesota.  The state investigation found that the “facility staff failed to complete a thorough assessment for the resident’s continued ability to safety use bilateral side rails following falls from bed, the addition of an air mattress overlay, and the resident’s decrease in functional abilities.  The resident’s neck became entrapped between the side rail and mattress and the resident sustained an injury as a result of the entrapment.”  [Report no. H5562008]

The Minneapolis Star Tribune reports that the resident, Alice Grieger, had worked as a nurse at the nursing home for much of the 1980s.  She died there on Aug. 24, 2013.

According to the newspaper report, the nursing home’s administrator, Cal Anderson, said the home appealed the findings because “we felt that the death was not attributable” to the resident being trapped by the rail. The state denied the appeal, he said.

Within a week of the death, the home responded with several changes, the report said. Among them: All bed rails in the home were scrutinized, and those not being used by residents were removed. Inspections of the gap between mattresses and rails were also conducted, including situations where mattress layers were added.

To learn more, please check out our recent 9-part series of blogs discussing The Dangers of Resident Bed Rails in Nursing Homes:

  • The Dangers of Resident Bed Rails in Nursing Homes–An Overview: Part 1 of 9
  • The Dangers of Resident Bed Rails in Nursing Homes–Rates of Incidence: Part 2 of 9
  • The Dangers of Resident Bed Rails in Nursing Homes–Types of Bed Rails: Part 3 of 9
  • The Dangers of Resident Bed Rails in Nursing Homes—Anatomy of Entrapment Part 4 of 9
  • The Dangers of Resident Bed Rails in Nursing Homes–Guiding Principles Regarding the Safe use of Bed Rails: Part 5 of 9
  • The Dangers of Resident Bed Rails in Nursing Homes–Policy Considerations Part 6 of 9
  • The Dangers of Resident Bed Rails in Nursing Homes–Risk Intervention: Part 7 of 9
  • The Dangers of Resident Bed Rails in Nursing Homes– Bed Rail Safety Guidelines: Part 8 of 9
  • The Dangers of Resident Bed Rails in Nursing Homes—Conclusion: Part 9 of 9

The Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm represents clients in cases involving catastrophic injury caused by nursing homes and other care facilities that fail to provide proper care, including the improper use of side rails. If you believe your loved one has been harmed because a nursing home and its employees cut corners, take action and contact the Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm online or call us toll-free at (877) 552-2873 to set up a no cost, no-obligation consultation.