Federal officials have cut funding for Hurstbourne Care Center at Stony Brook in Louisville following an investigation by the state Cabinet for Health and Family Services. The facility was found to have been dangerously understaffed. The Office of Inspector General released a 700-page report on the conditions. Some of the problems, cited by The Courier-Journal, included:
- “Insect infestations that left two residents- one a quadriplegic- screaming for help from staff because of ants crawling on them in a bed.
- Chronic staff shortages that one nurse described as ‘ghost staffing,’ workers listed on schedules who were not actually on duty.
- Unattended or unexplained injuries, including a resident’s broken leg apparently suffered in a fall, an injury that went undetected for 16 hours.
- Rooms and units that reeked of urine, clogged toilets, feces smeared on floors and in bathrooms and residents who complained of being forced to lie for hours in their own urine because no one was available to help them to a bathroom or change them.”
In addition to the cessation of funds, the facility is to be fined $629,000 for a variety of violations. Florida-based Consulate Health Care operates the nursing home, and it is unknown whether it will remain open in the future. Federal funding will continue until August to allow state officials and families time to relocate their loved ones to other facilities.
This case, which unfortunately required federal intervention to resolve, constitutes elder abuse and neglect to the highest degree. At the Hurstbourne Care Center, some residents were unable to eat without assistance and were at risk of malnutrition without that aid. According to the investigative report, “One resident at risk of choking was observed eating a paper napkin.”
When major care providers operate health facilities with an eye on the bottom line, people suffer. While it pays to research and prepare to move your loved one to a nursing home or full-time care facility, you ultimately must trust a caregiver with your loved ones’ life. When a caregiver betrays that trust, we are here to protect your rights and get you the compensation you deserve. If your loved one has suffered abuse or neglect at a nursing home in Kentucky or Ohio, please contact Crandall & Pera Law today for a free consultation.