ABC27 had an incredible article with video proof of horrendous violations at Susquehanna Valley Nursing and Rehabilitation Center. You can see the videos by using the link to the article.
“I’ve seen roaches, but these are huge,” Kayla Singleton said as she watched the video again. Singleton was a registered nurse supervisor at the facility when she recorded the video in the facility’s kitchen in June.
“I went in with another employee so she could show me what happens when you turn the light on in the kitchen,” she said. “Sure enough, I turned the light on and they were scattering everywhere. I just couldn’t believe it.” “I was gagging,” she added.
She says she decided to take her concerns to her supervisors. Singleton says she was fired a week later. She posted the video on Facebook shortly after.
“A lot of people fight with ‘I need my job, I need to support my family’ versus ‘These people need me to speak up for them, and if I do I’m going to lose the way I provide for my family’,” Singleton said. “That’s a tough situation to be in.”
“I felt like I had to warn the community,” she said.
Her concerns go beyond cockroaches, and she’s not alone. After Singleton posted the video, other former employees came forward. They said they hoped things would change when Vita Healthcare Group bought the facility in June 2015, but problems continued. Several told ABC27 there were problems with dirty wheelchairs, including allegations of maggots and complaints about the smells. An inspection from October 2015 says the Department of Health found evidence of dirty wheelchairs and discovered they were not being cleaned on a routine basis.
“Our residents weren’t being kept safe,” said Niccole Leas, a licensed practical nurse and former employee.
“They’re not even treated like they’re humans,” certified nursing assistant and former employee Brittany Dietz told ABC27.
“We just want to see those people in a place where they deserve to be,” former employee Ana Matteo said.
ABC27 went through Susquehanna Valley’s nursing home inspections. Eight separate inspections showed the nursing home was out of compliance. There were 14 documented complaints against the facility in that same amount of time. Several other inspections showed the facility did not “maintain a clean, safe and sanitary environment.”
“There wouldn’t be washcloths to wash them with because they’re still back in laundry or just didn’t exist,” Deitz said. “Soap would be gone.”
Former employees blame short-staffing to save money at the for-profit facility. “Staffing is an issue everywhere you go,” Leas said, “but you got to draw the line somewhere at what’s safe.”
Inspections show several violations including the allegation of verbal abuse, failing to notify responsible parties about falls, and evidence that the facility “failed to maintain a clean and sanitary condition.”