Many families entrust their loved one to a nursing facility to ensure they receive the highest level of care in a protected and safe environment. However, many of these residents suffer from dementia, Alzheimer’s disease or other mental conditions and are often confused and disoriented with the desire to wander away from the facility. Unfortunately, the Virden elder abuse attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers have represented many nursing home victims who have wandered off due to a lack of supervision by the nursing staff.
Elopement, or wandering, is a serious concern in nursing facilities that are understaffed, or staff with overworked employees. Often times, through inadequate manpower, or a lack of training, serious accidents from wandering away from the facility can occur.
In many cases, an eloping resident can wander away from the facility for hours at a time only to be brought back to the nursing home by the local police after others call law enforcement to handle the problem. Other times, the eloping resident is found days or weeks later miles away from the facility or their remains are located months later in an isolated part of town.Sunrise Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation Center
Sunrise Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation Center is a 96-certified bed Medicare/Medicaid-participating for-profit corporate nursing facility providing services to residents of Virden and Macoupin and Sangamon counties. The facility is located at:
333 S. Wrightsman St.
Virden, Illinois 62690
The programs and services offered at Sunrise Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation Center include:
- Physical, occupational, speech and pulmonary rehab therapies
- Outpatient therapy
- CHF (congestive heart failure) program
- Cardiac recovery
- Continence improvement program
- Stroke recovery program
- Respiratory specialty program
- Skin management
- Wound care
As a way to routinely manage their nursing home databases, the federal government, and state of Illinois update their recently opened investigations, filed complaints, safety concerns and health violations concerning every facility in the United States. This updated information is then posted online on numerous sites including Medicare.gov through their comparative analysis star rating summary system.
Currently, Sunrise Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation Center maintains an overall four out of five available star rating compared with other facilities nationwide. This includes five out of five stars for quality measures and three out of five stars for both health concerns and staffing issues. However, our Virden nursing home neglect attorneys have found deficiencies involving this facility that include:
- Failure to Provide Every Resident Environment Free of Accident Hazards and Risks and Failure to Provide Adequate Supervision to Prevent an Avoidable Accident
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated 11/03/2015, a complaint investigation against the facility was opened for its failure to "supervise [at a resident at the facility] reviewed for high risk for elopement.”
The failure was first noted in the facility’s Change of Condition – Behavioral Change involving a resident who at 5:00 PM was found “outside the building across the street. Certified Nurses’ Aide (CNA) saw her and she was ‘trying to hitchhike to [a nearby city]’.” The documentation noted that the “resident’s electronic ankle monitor was tested and it did not ‘go off’ when staff had her approach and opened the door upon getting her inside.” The documentation also showed that the resident “was confused, argumentative with exit seeking behaviors.” Further documentation shows that the resident’s “confusion noted to get worse toward the evening.”
The Administrator noted on the day of the elopement that the resident “was last seen at 4:45 PM on that evening… By a Registered Nurse (RN) [who stated that] at around 5:00 PM, the CNA was seen bringing [the resident] in through the front door of the facility.” The Certified Nursing Assistant said, “that was lightly raining at the time, however; [the resident] must not have been outside very long as her clothing was not wet, only damp [...and] that none of the staff were aware that [the resident] had left the building.” The Certified Nursing Assistant said that “there were a lot of visitors in the facility that evening since it was Halloween, and [the resident] may have left with them.”
The investigator noted that the deficient action of the nursing staff at Sunrise Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation Center failed to follow the facility’s policy and procedure for checking the electronic monitoring system that reads in part:
“Check wandering system and any corresponding door alarm/locking system during this inspection. Check transmitters, monitors and signal devices. Using bracelet or anklet or token/transmitter, test the range of the system.”
If your loved one wandered away from Sunrise Skilled Nursing and Rehab or any other Illinois nursing facility, Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers can take measures to ensure family member’s safety is the utmost priority. Our Sangamon County elder abuse attorneys can protect the legal rights of your loved one while holding the nursing staff and facility accountable for their unacceptable action or inaction.
We accept all wrongful death lawsuits, personal injury cases and nursing home negligent claims for compensation through contingency fee arrangements. We are only paid for our legal services once we have negotiated an acceptable financial compensation amount in an out-of-court settlement or win your case in front of a judge and jury.