State prosecutors charged seven nursing home employees with involuntary manslaughter after a patient died from a bedsore in 2017. The nursing home employees, which includes one nurse, are collectively charged with 37 crimes for their gross mistreatment and neglect of two nursing home patients during their time working at Whetstone Gardens and Care Center in Ohio. Announcing the charges, Attorney General Dave Yost says, “Evidence shows these nurses forced the victims to endure awful mistreatment and then lied about it.”
Yost says first patient “literally rotted to death” after developing a preventable bedsore or “pressure injury” in 2017. The patient, who entered the facility on a short-term basis, developed several bedsores after nursing staff failed to move the patient every few hours. Once the bedsores developed, the staff continued to ignore the nursing home resident and failed to treat the sores, also called pressure injuries or ulcers. Within weeks of developing the bedsore, the patient’s bedsores became infected with gangrene. The nursing home resident passed away just weeks later after the staffers at the nursing home failed to take “any medically appropriate steps.”
The criminal charges also stemmed from a second patient where the nursing home staff’s actions were even more flagrant and reprehensible. According to prosecutors, the indicted nursing home staffers falsified medical information and forged signatures for a patient that resulted in “physical harm as a result of inadequate care.” Ohio prosecutors say the staffers recorded treating the patient and administering medication when the patient was not even at the nursing home.
“These victims were completely dependent on others for day-to-day care, which their families trusted [the nursing home] to provide. Instead of providing that care, evidence shows these nurses forced the victims to endure awful mistreatment and then lied about it,” Yost told CNN. In addition to criminal charges filed against the neglectful and fraudulent staff, the families of the two alleged victims have filed civil lawsuits against the nursing homes.