The federal government and the state of Illinois require that every nursing facility reports all incidences or allegations of resident to resident abuse and mistreatment to protect the welfare of every resident in the home. Any failure to follow procedures and protocols could place the health and well-being of every resident in immediate jeopardy. Unfortunately, many facilities fail to follow the law and instead choose to decide on their own which cases of alleged abuse require investigation and those that do not. Sadly, the Freeport elder abuse attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers have handled many cases where residents have been repeatedly assaulted by the perpetrator before a necessary intervention is made.Presence St. Joseph Center
Presence St. Joseph Center is a 124-certified bed Medicare/Medicaid-participating non-profit center providing nursing services to residents of Freeport and Stephenson County, Illinois. The facility is located at:
659 E. Jefferson St.
Freeport, Illinois 61032
Their senior living options include:
- Independent and assisted living
- Short term rehabilitation
- Home care
- Memory care
Publicly-available data on nursing homes nationwide provide enough historical information for families in need of placing a loved one in a facility in their community to ensure they receive the best care. Numerous sites including Medicare.gov lists all the opened investigations, filed complaints, health violations and safety concerns of every facility in the United States.
Currently, Presence St. Joseph Center maintains an overall three out of five available star rating, which includes five out of five stars for quality measures, three out of five stars for staffing issues and two out of five stars for health inspections. However, our Freeport nursing home neglect attorneys have found numerous safety concerns involving this facility that include:
- Failure to Report and Investigate All Acts or Allegations of Abuse, Neglect or Mistreatment of Residents
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated 11/06/2015, a state surveyor made a notation during an annual licensure and certification survey concerning the facility's failure to "investigate a resident to resident physical altercation.” The state investigator also noted that the facility failed to “report the incident to the State Agency.” The investigation involved a cognitively impaired resident at the facility that has “no behavioral symptoms.”
On 11/03/2015, the resident “was ambulating in the hallway in a wheelchair.” In an interview with the resident at 1:00 PM on 11/05/2015 revealed that “I had one thing happen with another resident [who] slapped me so hard I would have fallen if I was not holding my walker. I think she was trying to find her room but she was in mine so I tried to help her find hers.” An observation made of the alleged assaulting resident at 1:30 PM that same day found the resident “sitting on her bed holding a doll.”
A review of the facility’s 08/04/2015 Departmental Notes states that that the assaulted resident “was slapped on the left side of her face when another resident mistakenly entered the room.” The report also indicates that the resident “had attempted to redirect the resident when she was stuck. The residents were separated and social service was contacted. No signs or symptoms of injury noted.”
The allegedly abusive resident’s Potential for Abuse Assessment stated that the resident “wanders into another resident’s room and the resident does exhibit aggressive behavior (hitting, kicking and biting).” The investigator noted that the resident’s “care plan does not include her wandering behaviors or potential for abuse.”
The investigator interviewed the facility’s Director of Nursing at 2:30 PM on 11/05/2015 who stated that on 08/04/2015 the resident wandered into another resident’s room and slapped that resident because they “thought [the other resident] was stealing her belongings. Staff then showed [the aggressive resident] to her room and we monitored [her] behavior.” The staff said that the resident “has not displayed any behaviors in the past” stating that “we did not do an investigation because it was not willful and the occurrence was not reported to the Illinois Department of Public Health because there was no injury and it was not willful.”
The investigator noted that the actions of the nursing staff and Administrator at Presence St. Joseph Center failed to follow state and federal nursing home regulations and the facility’s 05/12/2015 policy titled: Reporting and Investigating of Abuse that reads in part:
“The allegations of abuse, neglect… Is reported, thoroughly investigated, and acted upon. A preliminary report must be faxed immediately to the regional office of the Illinois Department of Public Health. An immediate investigation will be made either by the Administrator/designee.”
If your loved one has been assaulted, abused or mistreated while residing at any Illinois nursing facility, including Presence St. Joseph Center, Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers can help. Our Stephenson County elder abuse attorneys can ensure your loved one’s rights are protected and handle every aspect of your claim for financial compensation against all those who caused your loved one harm.
To ensure that your case for financial recompense is successfully resolved, contact our Freeport Illinois nursing home abuse law firm at (888) 424-5757 today to schedule a free case consultation. We accept all wrongful death lawsuits and personal injury cases through contingency fee agreements to avoid the need of paying for our services upfront.