Another completely preventable nursing home death recently made the headlines as reported in STLtoday. Employees at the Northgate Park Nursing Home left 95-year-old Fannie Mae Rooks in her wheelchair in an outdoor smoking area at the facility last week. Rooks reportedly died from exposure to the elements as she sat unattended in the cold weather. Local police investigators are trying to determine how Ms. Rooks made her way into the smoking area and how nursing home employees failed to keep track of her whereabouts.
Once again, I am amazed how nursing homes continually fail to provide even the most basic level of care to their residents. In this case, it is likely several nursing home employees were in a position where they should have seen this elderly lady sitting outside and brought her safety. Until nursing home owners are held responsible for the preventable injuries and deaths of their residents, situations involving nursing home neglect will continue to be an ongoing problem facing nursing home residents.