AG: Hidden Camera Investigation Led to the Arrest of 10 Nursing Home Employees Charged with Neglecting Double-Amputee

Ten employees of the Blossom North Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Rochester, New York were arrested in March 2014 for allegedly failing to provide adequate care to an elderly resident who was a double-amputee. According to the New York Attorney General’s office, six nurses and four nursing assistants faced a variety of charges, including Falsifying Business Records in the First Degree (a class E felony), Willful Violation of the Public Health Law, and Endangering the Welfare of a Physically Disabled Person (a class E felony). The six nurses charged are Junetta Jenkins, Jasmine Franco, Champagne Anderson, Savannah Harding, Binita Dahal and Faye Aguillon. The four nursing assistants are Krista Stevenson, Christy Holmes, Elizabeth Acevedo and Iesha Short.

wheelchair3.jpgThe investigation began after the patient’s son, Angel Pablon, suspected that his father was being neglected and mistreated and contacted the Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU). Pablon said, “I took it upon myself to see if they were providing the proper care for him because he was my daddy. There were times when dad was first there, the care was okay. There were times it looked like it got worse, not only his care, but the surroundings.”

When the MFCU placed a hidden camera in the patient’s room, investigators discovered that Pablon’s father, who was a double-amputee who suffered from upper body paralysis, diabetes, impaired cognition, high blood pressure and glaucoma, was being neglected by the staff. The video shows staff members not administering medication to the patient as well as failing to measure the patient’s blood sugar and blood pressure. The video also documents employees not caring for the patient’s catheter, not providing incontinence care and not performing range of motion exercises ordered by the doctor. In some instances, the video showed the elderly man lying in bed with no care for hours at a time. Investigators allege that employees attempted to conceal their neglect by falsifying the patient’s records.

Pablon said that he was disturbed by the findings of the video surveillance investigation. He stated, “My family trusted these individuals. I trusted these individuals.”

Commenting on the arrest, Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman stated, “Nursing home residents are among our state’s most vulnerable citizens and the perpetual neglect in this case is shameful. Today’s charges send a message that we will not tolerate anyone being neglected by those responsible for their care and we will use every tool in our arsenal, including hidden cameras, to ensure that those most in need of help are safely cared for and treated with respect and dignity.”

Israel Segal, the owner of Blossom North, also owns Blossom South, a facility which is being shut down for failing to provide adequate care to its residents.

Website Resource: Blossom North 10 plead not guilty, Democrat & Chronicle, Patti Singer and Victoria Freile, March 28, 2014
A.G. Schneiderman Announces Charges Against 10 Nursing Home Employees For Neglecting Disabled Resident

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