Verrazano Nursing Home Cited for Infection Deficiencies

Verrazano Nursing Home received 14 citations for violations of public health code between 2016 and 2020, according to New York State Department of Health records accessed on July 22, 2020. The Staten Island nursing home’s citations resulted from a total of four surveys by state inspectors. The deficiencies they describe include the following:

1. The nursing home did not employ adequate infection-prevention measures. Section 483.80 of the Federal Code requires the establishment and maintenance, by nursing home facilities, of a program designed to prevent and control communicable diseases and infections. A December 2019 citation found that Verrazano Nursing Home failed to ensure such. The citation states specifically that a Licensed Practical Nurse “was observed on five different occasions” providing wound care to a resident without washing her hands or otherwise performing proper hand hygiene. In one instance, for example, she was observed cleansing a resident’s sacral wound that was “soiled with feces,” then removing her gloves and donning new gloves without washing her hand in between, in contravention of policies. The citation goes on to state that residents at the facility “were no provided with hand wipes, or taken to wash hands prior to eating meals,” also in contravention of policy. The citation describes these deficiencies as having the “potential to cause more than minimal harm.” A plan of correction undertaken by the facility included the in-servicing of the LPN and the counseling of two CNAs concerning the need to ensure residents are given hand wipes before and after meals.

2. The nursing home did not guarantee residents’ right to freedom from physical restraints. Section 483.10 of the Federal Code provides nursing home residents with the “right to be treated with respect and dignity,” which includes a right to freedom “from any physical or chemical restraints imposed for purposes of discipline or convenience, and not required to treat… medical symptoms.” A December 2018 citation found that Verrazano Nursing Home failed to ensure such. The citation specifically describes a resident who “was observed with the use of seat belt on several occasions which the resident was unable to intentionally release the belt buckle.” The citation goes on to describe interviews with nursing staff who “did not identify the use of this device as a restraint,” and concludes that there was no medical justification for its use, nor any documented evidence of a physician’s order for its use. A plan of correction undertaken by the facility included the review and revision of the resident’s care plan.

3. The nursing home did not properly take care of garbage. Section 483.60 of the Federal Code requires nursing homes to “dispose of garbage and refuse properly.” A December 2018 citation found that Verrazano Nursing Home did not do so. The citation specifically describes the facility’s failure to properly contain waste in “dumpsters with lids or otherwise covered,” in contravention of the facility’s policy. In one instance a surveyor observed staff empty a kitchen garbage can into an outdoor dumpster whose front lid “was bent in the center” and whose back lid “was open,” with the dumpster “half-filled with translucent, garbage bags.” In a separate instance, the surveyor observed garbage bags “on the ground by the building wall behind the dumpster which were not in covered garbage cans.” A plan of correction undertaken by the facility included the fitting of the outdoor garbage container with an affixed lid.

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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