United Hebrew Geriatric Center Cited for Abuse

United Hebrew Geriatric Center received 24 citations for violations of public health laws between 2015 and 2019, according to New York State Department of Health records accessed on November 26, 2019. The New Rochelle nursing home’s citations resulted from a total of five inspections by state surveyors. The deficiencies they describe include the following:

1. The nursing home did ensure residents were protected from abuse. Section 483.12 of the Federal Code stipulates that nursing home facilities must protect their residents’ “right to be free from abuse, neglect, misappropriation of resident property, and exploitation.” According to an August 2017 citation, the nursing home did not properly supervise its staff to identify or prevent abuse, follow up on abuse prevention education to ensure its compliance, or ensure the reporting of abuse to the facility’s administrator. As such, according to the citation, the facility did not prevent “repeated” physical and emotional abuse of a resident with dementia and dysphagia. The citation describes video evidence that showed nursing staff forcefully feeding the resident, who had a swallowing disorder, and who “grimaced” and “expressed a fearful look” during the feeding. The citation also notes that a Registered Nurse entered the room during one incident and observed a Certified Nursing Assistant “feeding and handling the resident in a rough manner,” but “did not intervene to protect the resident.” The citation identified this deficiency as a pattern of conduct that posed immediate jeopardy to resident health or safety.”

2. The nursing home did not ensure its administrative practices provided for the highest possible resident well being. Section 483.70 of the Federal Code stipulates nursing home facilities must be administered so as to used their resources in a manner that reaches or sustains “the highest practicable physical, mental, and psychosocial well-being of each resident.” An August 2017 citation found that with respect to the above-mentioned instances of resident abuse, the nursing home was not properly administered in a manner that ensured residents attained their highest practicable potential well-being. The citation specifically found that the facility’s leadership did not “provide oversight and supervision of staff to protect residents from abuse during provision of care and feeding.” Interviewed about the steps she had taken to ensure staff compliance with anti-abuse policies, the facility’s administrator told an inspector that “she trusted her staff and she is realizing now that she can’t trust them anymore.” The citation described this deficiency as one that posed “immediate jeopardy to resident health or safety.”

3. The facility did not ensure it employed adequately competent nursing staff. Section 483.35 of the Federal Code states that nursing homes must employ nursing staff with “appropriate competencies and skills sets to provide nursing and related services to assure resident safety and attain or maintain the highest practicable… well-being of each resident.” An April 2019 citation found that the facility did not ensure its nurse aides had the competency necessary “to provide safe care and respond to individual needs” of one resident. The citation specifically describes an instance in which a resident, who had been able to stand and transfer to a wheelchair with one person’s assistance, was found by nurse aides to not be able to stand. The aides then used an assistive device to transfer the resident to her wheelchair, but did not notify a nurse that the resident’s condition had changed, and further neglected to obtain guidance about how to ensure the resident’s safe transfer to her wheelchair. The citation states that this deficiency had the “potential to cause more than minimal harm.”

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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