Failing to Protect Residents from Abuse

The Toledo Blade reported on an interesting story about Liberty Nursing Center of Toledo nursing home.  The nursing home lost its license after being repeatedly warned by the state several months ago that it faces loss of its license for “ongoing failure ... to protect residents from abuse” but it is still operating and has appealed the action.

Liberty Nursing Center of Toledo was notified in August that it would lose its license after an incident in which staff failed to properly respond to an incident of sexual abuse.  In August, Liberty was notified by the department that, barring a substantive change in care quality, its license would be revoked that month. At the same time, the department suggested terminating Liberty’s provider agreement, which would deny it Medicare and Medicaid funding.  The facility was fined $103,000 for failure to comply with Medicare and Medicaid regulations.

"The facility had a history of problems and was designated a Special Focus Facility by CMS, indicating a history of poor care that warrants stricter monitoring. Recent problems include a December, 2011, incident in which a motorist found a resident wandering without a coat two miles from the facility, a 2009 event in which two patients left the building and allegedly used cocaine and marijuana, and two incidents in which patients jumped out of windows and injured themselves. Each time, Liberty failed to develop care plans for other residents at risk of escape, the health department said."

"In the most recent incident, in July, which triggered the license revocation, a male resident diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder, delusions, and sexually aggressive behaviors entered the room of a partially paralyzed female patient. Nurses on duty found him lying on top of the woman with his pants removed and her incontinence brief pushed aside."

The administrator ordered them to “clean up” the woman, and she did not undergo a doctor’s examination. Liberty did not notify her guardians, file an official report with the Toledo Police Department, or notify the health department.

Liberty has appealed allowing it to continue to operate. Liberty’s parent company, Liberty Health Care Corp., operates more than a dozen other nursing homes across Ohio.  The chain’s owner, Linda Black-Kurek, is the immediate past president of the Ohio Health Care Association, an industry lobbying group.

 

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