New York State Veterans Home in St. Albans, Queens has reportedly left “1,000 boxes of PPE outside under a blue tarp for months,” leaving the supplies vulnerable to the elements, according to a recent report by THE CITY. The personal protective equipment includes medical gowns and other supplies, much of which has reportedly “been rendered unusable from rot and mildew.” Facility staff told the publication that there are “hundreds more boxes of PPE… stacked floor to ceiling” inside the facility, even though those rooms, including a library and a physical therapy unit, are “intended for resident use.”
The report goes on to describe facility staff who said the boxes of PPE have been set upon by “rats, raccoons and snakes from a nearby vegetable garden.” They did not know why the facility has continued accepting PPE while it has a surplus waiting in storage, nor why the facility has not transported the excess PPE to facilities that need it. Two employees told THE CITY that trucks recently came to the facility to pick up some “some of the boxes,” but that this only happened after the inventory of almost 1,000 boxed “had been exposed to the elements for months.”
According to the report, the New York Department of Health, which operates St. Albans, told THE CITY that the boxes were being moved to storage units, but declined to address the “visible damage to hundreds of boxes stored outside.” The facility’s administrator reportedly did not answer questions about the PPE supplies either.
New York State Veterans Home in St. Albans was the subject of a May 2020 report by THE CITY detailing allegations of negligence at the nursing home. Facility staff told the publication that the nursing home was violating various state Covid-19 protocols, for instance by failing to isolate residents with Covid-19 in a separate facility unit. Records maintained by the Department of Health show that the nursing home has received 20 health and safety code violations since 2017, including one for infection control failures and another for failure to properly dispose of garbage and refuse. The facility has also received two fines totaling $12,000 since 2013, according to those records.
More information on the surplus PPE at New York State Veterans Home in St. Albans is available via THE CITY.
The attorneys at the Law Offices of Thomas L. Gallivan, PLLC work diligently to protect the rights of nursing home residents. Please contact us to discuss in the event you have a potential case involving neglect or abuse.