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New York nursing home accused of neglect

The operators of a New York nursing home are facing multiple criminal and civil charges in connection to the alleged systemic neglect of facility residents. Nine employees were also charged with nursing home neglect, which allegedly resulted in the death of at least one resident.

According to news reports, that resident's family will soon file a malpractice lawsuit against the nursing home. The 72-year-old woman died after her ventilator remained unconnected for two hours, despite the fact that a pulse oximeter alarm sounded every 15 seconds at three separate locations in the facility. "I don't want anyone else's mom, sister, brother, father to pass like this," the woman's daughter told reporters. "She deserved better."

Six employees have been charged in connection with the woman's death, accused of attempting to cover up the fatality and the events that led up to it. Two additional employees have been charged with falsifying documents related to other injuries that occurred at the nursing home.

This is not the first time that the nursing home, which opened in 2003, has faced accusations like these. In 2008, six employees were charged with neglecting patients. The outcome of that case is unclear. Despite this history, the nursing home maintains that its employees are innocent. Operators point to their high Department of Health inspection scores as proof of their innocence, which only goes to show that the cleanliness of a nursing home does not necessarily indicate that its residents are being well cared for.

All of the accused have been placed on paid administrative leave pending the resolution of the charges against them. We will continue to update our Queens medical malpractice blog with any updates to this troubling story.

Source: NBC New York, "9 Arrested in Long Island Nursing Home Probe," Frank Eltman, Feb. 11, 2014

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