St. George Health Care Center, St. George, South Carolina
Many of the problems with abuse and neglect at nursing homes and assisted living facilities are the result of a lack of trained personnel, understaffing, or minimal supervision. In these incidents, the resident's needs are often ignored, or they suffer head injuries and broken bones from falling, or life-threatening bedsores as the result of neglect. Without proper supervision, the resident can wander away (elope) from the facility and suffer a preventable injury or death. The South Carolina Nursing Home Law Center Attorneys have represented many families whose loved one became the victim of abuse at the hands of their caregivers, other residents, friends or employees.St. George Health Care Center
This Long-Term Care Facility is an 88-certified-bed Center providing services to residents of St. George and Dorchester County, South Carolina. The "for-profit" Home is located at:
905 Duke StreetFinancial Penalties and Violations
Saint George, SC 29477
Federal investigators penalize nursing facilities with monetary fines and deny payment for Medicare services when the nursing home had been cited for serious violations of rules and regulations. Within the last three years, St. George Health Care Center has not been fined by federal or state government nursing home agencies. Additional documentation about penalties and fines can be found on the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control Website concerning this nursing home.St. George South Carolina Nursing Home Residents Safety Concerns
Families can download statistics from the South Carolina Department of Public Health online site and the Medicare.gov web page to view a comprehensive historical list of all health violations, dangerous hazards, safety concerns, incident inquiries, opened investigations, and filed complaints of every facility statewide. The information can be used to determine the level of health care and hygiene assistance each long-term care facility in the community provides its patients.
According to Medicare, the facility maintains an overall rating of one out of five stars, including one out of five stars concerning health inspections, one out of five stars for staffing issues and four out of five stars for quality measures. The Dorchester County neglect attorneys at Nursing Home Law Center have found numerous safety concerns, violations and deficiencies at St. George Health Care Center that includes:
- Failure to Provide Care and Services to Residents to Prevent the Development of a Bedsore or Allow an Existing Pressure Wound to Heal
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated July 14, 2017, the state agency surveyor noted the facility's deficient practice caused by their failure to "ensure pressure ulcers were assessed on admission and staged by a registered nurse for [one resident] reviewed for pressure ulcers." The deficient practice by the nursing staff involved a resident who "developed a suspected deep tissue injury to the right heel. On May 16, 2017, the resident's wound was classified as unstageable due to thick eschar."
The investigator further reviewed the resident's Weekly Measurements and Staging between May 3, 2017, and July 11, 2017, where a Licensed Practical Nurse signed for the staging. The surveyor reviewed the back side of the Wound Treatment and Progress Report that revealed that a Registered Nurse had signed the document one time. During an interview with the facility Nurse Consultant on July 12, 2017, it was revealed that the Director of Nurses "went with the nurse weekly and staged the resident's wound and signed on the back of the form. A review of the weekly staging and measuring form revealed there was no documented evidence the Director of Nurses staged the wounds weekly."
- Failure to Provide Every Resident an Environment Free of Accident Hazards and Risks and Provide Adequate Supervision to Prevent Avoidable Accidents
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated July 14, 2017, a state surveyor made a notation of the nursing home's failure to "ensure chemicals were stored securely in a janitor's closet on the 100 Hall and further failed to ensure throat lozenges and denture tablets were stored out of reach for potential wandering residents" in one unit. The state investigator performed an initial tour on July 10, 2017, of the 100 Hall and observed "an unlocked housekeeping closet with unsecured chemicals." At that time, the investigator also observed "tissue paper stuck into the opening where the latch would lock the door once closed. The door would not completely close due to the tissue paper in the opening."
The investigator interviewed a facility Laundry Worker and Maintenance Technician who both "confirmed the door was unlocked and the closet contained unsecured chemicals. The laundry worker removed the tissue paper from the latch opening and said the closet is usually locked. The maintenance technician verified the closet was not locked and also said it is usually locked and went on to confirm that housekeeping staff had access to a key to unlock the closet if needed." The surveying team reviewed the facility policy titled: Maintenance/Housekeeping Policies and Procedures - General Cleaning that reads in part:
"This is a routine procedure that is used to maintain a janitor's closets in a clean, neat, orderly and secure manner."
"Door should be kept locked at all times when not in use."
The surveying team notified the Director of Nurses of their findings.
- Failure to Have a Registered Nurse on Duty At Least Eight Hours Every Day Seven Days a Week
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated July 14, 2017, a notation was made by a state investigator about the nursing home's failure to "ensure the Director of Nurses served as a Charge Nurse only when the facility had an average occupancy of 60 or fewer residents for 30 of 100 days" to remain compliant with state and federal nursing home regulations.
- Failure to Develop, Implement and Enforce Policies That Investigate, Control and Keep Infections from Spreading
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated July 14, 2017, a state agency investigator noted the facility's failure to "establish an effective Infection Control Program. Observation of the Laundry revealed there was close proximity of soiled to clean linens/personal clothing and during room observations, person care equipment was observed uncovered or unlabeled in residents' restrooms." These deficiencies were identified during observation of an initial tour of the facility with the Maintenance Director and Administrator. As a part of the investigation, the survey team reviewed the facility's policies. However, "no policy was provided during the survey process related to improper storage of items."
In a separate summary statement of deficiencies dated September 25, 2015, the state investigator documented the facility's failure to "provide the necessary treatment and services to promote healing and prevent new sores from developing." The deficient practice by the nursing staff involved one resident "reviewed with pressure sores."
The investigator reviewed a resident's medical records that revealed the resident "had an unstageable pressure ulcer to [their] left heel. Further record review revealed a physician's orders" for treatment by the established protocols and procedures. However, the investigator observed the Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) providing pressure ulcer treatment to the resident including placing "a sock on the resident's left foot." The survey team interviewed the facility Director of Nurses who stated "placing a sock over the resident's foot was not open to [the] air" which did not follow established protocols for healing.
- Failure to Ensure Every Resident's Medication Regimen Is Free from Unnecessary Drugs
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated September 25, 2015, a notation was made by the state surveyor about the nursing home's failure to "implement behavior interventions with the resident's prescribed antipsychotic medication [to] reduce or discontinue utilization of the drug." The deficient practice by the nursing staff involved one resident who "was prescribed antipsychotic medication."
The state survey team reviewed the resident's Medication Administration Record (MAR) that revealed that during a specific time frame, the resident received 24 doses of their antipsychotic medication "due to anxiety, restlessness or agitation." A review of the nurse's notes revealed that "redirection was attempted." However, "no specific or consistent interventions were documented [before] the administration of the anti-anxiety medication."
- Failure to Honor the Resident's Right to a Safe, Clean and Comfortable and Homelike Environment
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated February 27, 2018, the state investigator noted the facility's failure to "ensure each resident had a safe, clean, comfortable and homelike environment." The surveyor noted several areas in the facility that have "been patched did not repaint and match the paint color of the room." These areas included "a door and the 200 unit that had a large crack and the glass."
The state survey team reviewed complaint information that was received by the State Agency filed by a complainant who stated the "exit door [at the facility] had a huge crack in the glass across the bottom of the door and a piece of blue tape is used to cover the crack." The complaint said that they had observed this crack on January 19, 2018. "The Maintenance Director provided a copy of the work order from a glass repair company dated February 20, 2018, to measure the broken glass door. The Maintenance Director stated "they] called the glass repair company and the work order was created on the date the door crack was identified. The Maintenance Director stated that [they] had been at the facility for three years and the door glass had not been cracked before to their knowledge."
- Failure to Set up an Ongoing Quality Assessment and Assurance Group to Review Quality Deficiencies and Develop Corrective Plans of Action
In a summary statement of deficiency dated July 20, 2018, investigators documented the nursing home's failure to "develop and implement appropriate plans of action to correct identified quality deficiencies. The surveyor noted several areas in the facility that had not been patched and not repainted to match the paint color of the room. During interviews, the surveyor learned that the facility had identified the problems and noted it during a QAPI [Quality Assurance and Performance Improvement] meeting but did not develop an appropriate plan of action to correct the problem."
The Maintenance Director indicated that the "maintenance department has started painting different areas of the building. They will start in the front hall and then move around the building." However, the QAPI contained "no information about when the work was to be finished." The investigator asked the Administrator "for any information on the plan of when the painting project would be completed. The Administrator said there was no set time for when the project will be completed."
- Failure to Maintain Accurate, Complete and Organized Clinical Records on Each Resident That Meets Professional Standards
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated July 14, 2017, the state investigator documented the facility's failure to "ensure complete and accurate medical records for [three residents with] discrepancies in code status listed on the physician's orders." In one incident, a resident "has discrepancies in documentation related to urinary incontinence."
- Failure to Keep Complete, Dated Lab Records in the Resident's File
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated July 14, 2017, the state investigator documented the facility's failure to "ensure lab results were in the medical record for [a resident] for their Physician to view." The state investigator reviewed a resident's lab results involving a PT (prothrombin time) INR (International normalization ratio) tests that can detect or diagnose a bleeding disorder or excessive clotting disorder. While there were test results for February 6, 2017, and February 16, 2017, as expected, "no other results for PT/INR were found in the medical record. There should have been PT/INR results for February 9, 2017, February 13, 2017, and February 20, 2017." The investigator interviewed a Registered Nurse Consultant who "verified the findings and called the lab and had the results facts to the facility. The registered nurse could not verify that the physician had reviewed the results due [because] they were not in the facility nor the resident's medical record."
If you or your loved one suffered injury or harm while a resident at St. George Health Care Center, call the South Carolina nursing home abuse attorneys at Nursing Home Law Center at (800) 926-7565 law offices now for advice, counsel, and representation. Our law firm fights aggressively on behalf of Dorchester County victims of mistreatment living in long-term facilities including nursing homes in St. George. Our skilled attorneys can work on your family's behalf to successfully resolve your financial recompense claim against all those who caused your loved one's harm. We file claims against nursing homes, medical centers, doctors and nursing staff. Contact us now to schedule a free case review to discuss how to obtain justice and resolve a financial compensation claim. Let us fight aggressively on your behalf to ensure your rights are protected.
We accept every case concerning wrongful death, nursing home abuse, and personal injury through contingency fee arrangements. This agreement postpones making payments to our legal firm until after we have successfully resolved your case through a jury trial award or negotiated settlement. We provide every client a "No Win/No-Fee" Guarantee, meaning you will owe us nothing if we cannot obtain compensation on your behalf. Our team of attorneys can begin working for your family today to make sure you are adequately compensated for your damages. All information you share with our law offices will remain confidential.