St. Margaret’s Center Cited for Fall, Infection Control

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St. Margaret’s Center has been in violation of public health codes and has received 31 citations in the last four years for failing to prevent accidents and injuries and for lacking proper infection control and not following the proper safety precautions when caring for patients’ cuts and wounds.

St. Margaret’s Center received 31 citations for violations of public health code between 2017 and 2021, according to New York State Department of Health records accessed on September 25, 2021. It has also received three fines totaling $36,000 since 2015. The Albany nursing home’s citations resulted from a total of seven surveys by state inspectors. The violations they describe include the following:

1. The nursing home did not adequately prevent accidents. Nursing home residents have the right to an environment as free as possible of accident hazards under Section 483.25 of the Federal Code. A February 11 citation found that St. Margaret’s Center failed to ensure such. The citation specifically describes the facility’s failure to ensure the siderails on a resident’s crib “were properly positioned and latched to prevent a fall from the crib.” According to the citation, a Certified Nursing Aide observed the resident flip out of their crib, after which the resident was observed sitting up on the floor, “crying and bleeding from the right side of the mouth.” A plan of correction undertaken by the facility included the re-education of nursing staff on the proper use of crib rails.

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The nursing home also failed to follow food safety guidelines and they were cited for leaky faucets and a dishwasher that needed repairs.

2. The nursing home did not implement adequate infection control measures. Section 483.80 of the Federal Code requires nursing homes to create and maintain an infection prevention and control program in order to mitigate the transmission of disease. A March 2019 citation found that St. Margaret’s Center failed to ensure such. The citation specifically describes a wound dressing change in which a Licensed Practical Nurse did not maintain standard safety precautions. It goes on to describe the resident placing dressing supplies on the resident’s bed “without a barrier” and conducting certain actions without washing her hands and changing gloves beforehand, per safety standards. A plan of correction undertaken by the facility included the re-education of the nurse in question.

3. The nursing home did not abide by food service safety standards. Under Section 483.60 of the Federal Code, nursing homes must “safe growing and food-handling practices. (iii) This provision does not preclude residents from consuming foods not procured by the facility. §483.60(i)(2) – Store, prepare, distribute and serve food in accordance with professional standards for food service safety..” A February 2020 citation found that St. Margaret’s Center failed to ensure such. The citation specifically describes an automatic dishwasher that was not operated “within the manufacturer’s specifications.” It also states that sink faucets were observed leaking and that equipment and floors “required cleaning.” A plan of correction undertaken by the facility included the replacement of the dishwasher’s temperature light switch and the cleaning of soiled areas.

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.

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