Sunharbor Manor: COVID-19 Fatalities, 2 Infection Citations

Sunharbor Manor suffered 26 fatalities from Covid-19 as of June 23, 2020, per state records. The nursing home also received 26 citations finding it violated public health code between 2016 and 2020, per health records accessed on June 24, 2020. Two of those citations concerned infection prevention and control policies and procedures. The Roslyn Heights nursing home’s citations resulted from a total of five surveys by state inspectors. The deficiencies they describe include the following:

1. The nursing home did not adequately protect residents from infection. Section 483.80 of the Federal Code states that nursing homes must create and maintain an infection prevention and control program with the goal of preventing the development and transmission of infection. A November 2019 citation found that Sunharbor Manor failed to ensure adequate practices were in place. the citation states specifically that a Registered Nurse “did not… wash his hands or change his gloves” after cleaning a resident’s pressure ulcer wound. It goes on to state that the nurse cleansed the wound with saline, but did not remove his gloves or perform hand hygiene before applying medication with a tongue depressor, then applying a medication to the wound and covering it with dry protective dressing. In an interview, the nurse stated that “he should have washed his hands and changed his gloves” after cleaning the wound.

2. A February 2017 citation also found that Sunharbor Manor violated Section 483.80 of the Federal Code, which concerns infection prevention and control practices. The citation states specifically that a Licensed Practical Nurse did not perform proper hand hygiene while caring for a resident’s pressure ulcer wound, and that a resident with physician-ordered contact precautions had no signage on their door indicating such. With respect to the first deficiency, an inspector observed a nurse wiping down a resident’s wound with skin prep and then covering it with gauze without cleansing her hands in between. In an interview, the LPN “stated that she should have removed her gloves and cleansed her hands prior to dressing the wound.” A plan of correction undertaken by the facility included the in-servicing of licensed nurses on the need for signage indicating rooms where the resident is on contact precautions.

3. The nursing home did not ensure the promotion of resident dignity and respect. Section 483.10 of the Federal Code stipulates that nursing homes “treat and care for each resident in a manner and in an environment that promotes maintenance or enhancement of his or her quality of life recognizing each resident’s individuality.” A February 2017 citation found that Sunharbor Manor failed to ensure such. The citation states specifically that the nursing home fell short with regard to two residents. On two occasions, it states, a resident’s Foley catheter drainage bag was observed without a privacy bag. It also states that another resident “was observed being pulled backwards in a reclining Geri chair,” in contravention of facility practices. A plan of correction undertaken by the facility included the in-servicing of relevant staff.

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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