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New York nursing home under investigation after Sandy

The recent hurricane that hit New York and other parts of the East Coast left widespread devastation. Many residents were able to evacuate and avoid the storm but some senior citizens living in nursing homes were not as lucky. One nursing home facility is now under investigation by the State Health Department for failing to provide even basic care to its residents during the storm.

The facility isn't to blame for the bad weather but the actions of the staff and management during the storm is being called into question and could be considered nursing home negligence. As patients were transported to emergency shelters, many were unaccompanied and traveled without their medical records or information, which violates state regulations.

There failures started even before the evacuation of residents. The facility didn't add staff for the predicted storm, didn't stock enough supplies and did not ready patient records for transportation. Both the nursing home administrator and nursing home director were oddly unaccounted for as the rest of the staff dealt with the storm.

The home has a history of inadequate response to storms. Last year, when a tropical storm headed toward New York, the facility reacted slowly and again, transported patients without staff accompaniment or records. The State Health Department did not conduct an investigation into those events.

Families members are still searching for some of their loved ones who were evacuated to emergency shelters. Any patients who were injured as a result of the negligent care or preparations by the facility may be able to recover money for their injuries. Nursing home neglect is still an issue, even in the face of an emergency situation and care givers need to be responsible for their patients and residents.

Source: New York Times, "Nursing Home Is Faulted Over Care After Storm," Michael Powell, Sheri Fink, Nov. 9, 2012

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