Alhambra Care Center Abuse and Neglect Attorneys
Senior citizens, the disabled, infirm and rehabilitating are often subjected to neglect and abuse in nursing homes. This mistreatment often leaves family member shaken at the thought that their loved one is unsafe in a dangerous environment. Accidents, injuries, and unexpected death are often the result of a lack of supervision or untrained nursing staff. Other patients suffer injury through resident-to-resident abuse or sexual assault.
If your loved one is the victim of mistreatment, the Illinois Nursing Home Law Center Attorneys can provide immediate legal intervention. Our team of lawyers has helped many Madison County nursing home residents by working on their behalf and filing and resolving monetary recovery claims. We use the law to ensure our clients are adequately compensated for their damages. Contact us now so we can begin working on your case today.Alhambra Care Center
This facility is a "for profit" center providing services to residents of Alhambra and Madison County, Illinois. The Medicare and Medicaid 84-certified bed long-term care (LTC) home is located at:
417 East Main Street
Alhambra, Illinois, 32001
In addition to providing around-the-clock skilled nursing care, the facility also offers:
- Medication management
- Wound care
- Restorative nursing care
- Personal care
- Specialized nutritional support
Illinois and federal agencies are duty-bound to monitor every nursing home and levy monetary fines or deny payments through Medicare when investigators identify serious violations of nursing home regulations. In some cases, the nursing home receives multiple penalties if surveyors find severe violations that harmed or could have harmed a resident. On November 9, 2016, the federal government imposed a monetary fine against the facility for $30,150.
Over the last thirty-six months, Alhambra Care Center has received seven formally filed complaints that resulted in citations. Additional documentation about fines and penalties can be found on the Illinois Department of Public Health Nursing Home Reporting Website concerning this nursing facility.Alhambra Illinois Nursing Home Safety Concerns
Families can visit the Illinois Department of Public Health and Medicare.gov websites to obtain a complete list of all safety concerns, incident inquiries, opened investigations, filed complaints, dangerous hazards, and health violations. The regularly updated information can be used to make a well-informed decision on which long-term care facilities in the community provide the highest level of care.
According to Medicare, this facility maintains an overall rating of one out of five stars, including one out of five stars concerning health inspections, two out of five stars for staffing issues and four out of five stars for quality measures. The Madison County neglect attorneys at Nursing Home Law Center have found serious deficiencies and safety concerns at Alhambra Care Center that include:
- Failure to Provide an Environment Free of Unnecessary Physical Restraints
- Failure to Timely Report Suspected Abuse, Neglect and Report the Results of the Investigation to Proper Authorities
- Failure to Develop Policies That Prevent Mistreatment, Neglect or Abuse of Residents
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated November 23, 2016, the state surveyors noted that the facility failed to “provide a medical reason and failed to assess the benefits justifying the use of a lap top cushion for two residents reviewed for physical restraints.” The investigators observed a resident on numerous times on November 14, 2016, while the resident “sat with a lap top cushion securing [the resident] in her wheelchair.”
During the observations, it was revealed that the resident “was unable to remove her lap top cushion when requested [by a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)].” The following day at 10:30 AM, the resident was “unable to follow the CNA prompt to show how to remove the lap top cushion.” The CNA stated that at this time, the resident’s “lap top cushion is on all the time except that meals, otherwise [the resident] will get up.” The CNA said that “the lap top cushion keeps [the resident] in her chair and prevents her from falling.”
On November 16, 2016, just after noon, the resident “was in the Café eating lunch with her lap top cushion in place securing her in the wheelchair.” Just over two hours later, the resident was observed: “in her wheelchair with her lap top cushion on.” A Licensed Practical Nurse/Minimum Data Set Coordinator requested that the resident “remove her lap top cushion.” The resident attempted, but “was unable to remove the device.”
Five minutes later, the LPN “stated that he or she is doing the assessments for the use of lap top cushion for [the resident and stated that the resident] can remove the laptop cushion at will, but not when prompted.” The LPN also said that “the laptop cushion was put in place because [the resident] would lean forward while propelling herself in the wheelchair.”
The investigators reviewed the resident’s MDS (Minimum Data Set) that documents that the resident “has moderately impaired decision-making skills and needs extensive assist with most activities of daily living including transfers.” A review of the resident’s Physical Restraints/Adaptive Equipment Consent documents the potential negative outcomes were reviewed but none of the potential benefits for the use of the laptop cushion.”
The document titled: Restraints/Adaptive Equipment Use dated August 15, 2016, reveals that the nursing home is using the “adaptive equipment [that is] supported by an appropriate reason for use.” The nursing home says that “the resident has a movement disorder which causes her to lunge forward, also has abnormal posture, which causes sacral sliding. The resident [is to utilize] a lap top cushion went up in a wheelchair for body alignment [which is] removed two hours [for] ten minutes for positioning during meals. The family declines therapy for strengthening/balance issues related to [the resident’s progressive disease].”
The survey team reviewed the resident’s Care Plan Problems for Falls edited on November 14, 2016, that revealed “approached start date: November 14, 2016. Laptop [cushion used] in a wheelchair to reduce the risk of the resident lunging forward when spasms occur. Lap top cushion can be removed by the resident. The staff removes during meals, toileting.” However, the investigators stated that there “was no physical or occupational therapy assessment to justify the use of the lap top cushion.”
The resident was observed just before lunchtime on November 14, 2016 “in her wheelchair in the B-Wing hallway sleeping with her head on a rolled blanket on the left armrest and a lap top cushion in front of her.” Fifty-four minutes later, the resident was observed “in the Café sitting in her wheelchair with her lap top cushion on with her head down. Despite having the lap top cushion on while sitting in the wheelchair, [the resident] remained with her head bent and had difficulty sitting upright.”
Documentation reveals that the facility Director of Nursing requested that the resident remove the lap top cushion that was in the wheelchair midafternoon on November 17, 2016. The resident responded to the Director “when her name was called [she] did not try to move or push the lap buddy.” The resident’s “hands stayed where they were on top of the lap top cushion.”
The Director said that “there were no alternative methods or attempts at a reduction for [the resident stating that the resident] had a lap top cushion because it was what her family wanted [to use to] stop [the resident] from sitting with her head on her lap.” The Director said that “the facility tried and tried to talk to the family by discontinuing the use of the laptop cushion, but the family refused.”
The Director stated that the resident “cannot remove the lap top cushion at will.” Another nursing staff member said that the resident cannot remove the lap top cushion at all. The surveyors reviewed the facility’s policy titled: Restraints (Physical) that reads in part:
“Assess the resident’s need for restraint use. Obtain informed consent for restraint use. Obtain a physician’s orders.”
“Develop or review [the] resident Care Plan for a type of restraint, the reason for use, alternative methods to be used and method of application.”
“List medical symptoms to be treated and methods to reduce and eliminate restraint.”
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated November 23, 2016, the state investigator noted that the facility “allowed an employee to continue to have direct contact with residents after an allegation of abuse was reported.” The survey team said that this deficiency “has the potential to affect all fifty-two residents living in the facility.”
Documentation shows that on the morning of November 17, 2016, an anonymous resident stated that the Administrator “does not like me. On the day of admission, [the Administrator] came to the room and said, ‘if you do not like the way things are run here, I could make it so you can never get out.’”
The anonymous resident stated that what the Administrator said “has always [stayed] with me. Do not tell anyone you are talking to us. They will get us.” The surveyor said that the resident “expressed fear of retaliation from [the Administrator].”
Documentation shows that approximately one hour later the Director of Nursing “was informed of the allegation of abuse against [the Administrator, stating] ‘I cannot imagine who said that, that is not our policy. If a resident is truly unhappy, they would be able to leave, and the Social Worker would find them placement, and they could leave the facility. That would not occur. That is wrong. That would never happen. We have never said that to anyone. I have never had that stated to me. If we were told [that the Administrator] would fix it so the resident cannot leave. The resident can leave. I do not recall [the Administrator] ever saying that.”
The Director also said that “With that statement, I am not sure. I definitely would talk to [the Administrator]. We will have to ask families on admission. I would leave [the Administrator] in the equation. In a normal situation, I would interview the staff, and if it were of a serious nature, I would send them home. With [the Administrator], we would have an investigation, and it would take [the Administrator] and I” to perform the investigation.
The Director also said that “well, if the abuser, I would have to interview [the Administrator] and I would have to interview them. I would have to act on this now. I do not know where to start [the investigation] – all fifty residents? If we get a complaint, retry to fix it. Since I have been the Director of Nursing, we have had altercations with staff. I have never seen real abuse. We have had staff too quickly with the resident, but I do not count that is abuse. I do an investigation to see if it's intentional. I would have to know who made the allegation to investigate.”
The Director said, “I know we have a resident who says, ‘I want to leave.’ Her sister makes her stay here. Any allegations I had to talk to the person, but not knowing who made the allegation makes it tough.”
Less than one hour later, the Director stated that “I have talked to the [Administrator] and she said she never said to any resident [seven residents and] a resident’s daughter. They all said no one told them they could not leave, and they were satisfied.” One resident “would take alternative care if he could be by his kids and now his daughter does not want It. I am following the Abuse Policy. I really need to know who said this to do an investigation.”
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated November 23, 2016, the state investigators documented that the facility had failed to “operationalize policies and procedures for the protection of residents and for the investigation and timely reporting of abuse. This [failure] has the potential to affect all fifty-two residents living in the facility.”
During the late morning hours of November 17, 2017, the Director of Nursing/Abuse Coordinator “was notified of an allegation of abuse with [the Administrator] being the alleged abuser.” Just after noon through 3:40 PM, the Administrator “remained in the facility in contact with residents.”
At 11:19 AM that morning, the Director told the investigators that “I have not had a chance to talk to [the Administrator] because she is busy.” By 12:22 PM, the Director stated: “I have talked to [the Administrator], and she said she has never said to any resident that they cannot leave.”
The Director stated at 3:45 PM that day that “well, today was so busy that [the Administrator] just could not leave. She was too busy and hectic and [the Administrator] said she did not do anything.”
Do you suspect your loved one was the victim of abuse, mistreatment or neglect while a resident at Alhambra Care Center? If so, contact Illinois nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys at Nursing Home Law Center at (800) 926-7565 today. Our law firm fights aggressively on behalf of Madison County victims of mistreatment living in long-term facilities including nursing homes in Alhambra. Contact us now to schedule a free case review to discuss how to obtain justice and resolve a financial compensation claim.
We accept every case involving nursing home neglect, wrongful death, or personal injury through a contingency fee agreement. This arrangement will postpone the need to make a payment for our legal services until after our attorneys have resolved your case through a jury trial award or negotiated out of court settlement.
We provide all clients a “No Win/No-Fee” Guarantee, meaning you owe us nothing if we are unable to obtain compensation on your behalf. Let our law firm start working on your case today to ensure your family receives the financial compensation they deserve for your harm. All information you share with our law offices will remain confidential.Sources: