The Minnesota Star-Tribune reported that an assisted-living facility is being held responsible for the death of a resident who suffered head injuries from a fall and received no medical attention for days afterward.
The Health Department’s investigative report says that Lighthouse of Columbia Heights “failed to report changes” in the resident’s condition to a nurse and “failed to seek medical attention in a timely manner” after the resident fell in November 2011 and developed a sizable bump on one side of her head and a smaller one on the other side.
The resident was hospitalized three days later before dying on Dec. 5. Her death certificate concluded the fall caused her death. In citing the center for neglect, the report noted that the facility had no registered nurse available for unlicensed staffers to call after hours in the event of changes in residents’ conditions.
The estate of Pauline Cook, a resident killed at OakBridge Terrace, a Rock Hill assisted living home is suing the home and two employees. The Herald of Rock Hill reports that the lawsuit says the crime could have been prevented. Cook was found dead in her shower in November at OakBridge Terrace. Her death came the day after she reported to staff and police that someone had been forging her checks. The lawsuit accuses ACTS Retirement-Life Communities of wrongful death, negligence and misconduct. The suit also says the home’s resident nursing director and a cook knew about the alleged thefts and could have stopped her from killing Cook.
Employee Braquette Walton was arrested and charged with Cook’s death. Police said the nurse’s aide later confessed to killing Cook and trying to cover up the crime. Walton faces several charges including murder and burglary, and she is being held without bail in the York County jail.
Prosecutor Kevin Brackett said at Walton’s bond hearing in December that Walton used her work badge to enter the building, hid from security cameras and employees in an unused room and called a nursing station at least seven times in an attempt to get into Cook’s room unnoticed. She’s accused of smothering Cook and then dragging her to the shower and leaving the water running in an effort to make it look like Cook accidentally fell.
The Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinel reported that Laurie Bebo, the president and chief executive of Assisted Living Concepts Inc., received total compensation of $1.36 million in 2010–an increase of 32%. Her pay consisted of a salary of $500,000, stock awards valued at $384,560, non-equity incentive plan compensation of $374,063 and other compensation of $101,249. Bebo’s total compensation in 2009 was $1.03 million.
Assisted Living Concepts posted net income of $16.5 million in 2010, compared with a loss of $155,00 in 2009. Its stock price closed the year at $32.53 after finishing at $26.37 in 2009.
There have been numerous media outlets including WSPA that have discussed the incident involving an assisted living resident who died because of the neglect of the home. The Laurens County Coroner concluded that the resident died of heat stroke at an assisted living facility should not have been allowed to sit in the sun for hours.
Frances Louise Farmer, 67, died from symptoms of heat stroke, according to Coroner Nick Nichols after finding Farmer unresponsive in a chair outside the facility. Farmer was a resident at La Forrest Community Care, an assisted living facility Paramedics arrived at 1:13pm, Farmer’s body temperature was 107.8 degrees. The temperature on that day was over 90 degrees. Farmer was in the sun "for at least a couple of hours, based on statements given by different witnesses.
Nichols says Farmer had heat blisters all over her upper body and upper legs. “I’m not saying this was anything beyond an accident, but I also wonder how someone who is known to be on this type of medication could be allowed to sit outside in the hot sun for two hours without a nurse or someone making them come inside," says Nichols.
The State Law Enforcement Division confirms it is investigating the death along with the Department of Health and Environmental Control, which has oversight of all registered residential care facilities. No charges have been filed yet and knowing the competency and enforcement history of DHEC, none will be filed.
There were a couple of articles mentioning Emeritus bid for bankrupt Sunwest. Long Term Living Magazine’s article here. Oregon Live also had an article here with links to the history of the Sunwest saga.
Emeritus Corporation, a national provider of assisted living and Alzheimer’s care services, was the only bid received in the Sunwest bankruptcy action. The purchase to acquire 149 communities formerly operated by an affiliate of Sunwest Management is a joint venture between Emeritus, Blackstone Real Estate Advisors VI, L.P., and Columbia Pacific Advisors, LLC, an entity affiliated with Emeritus’ Chairman and Co-CEO.
The transaction includes up to 149 communities with a total estimated purchase price of approximately $1.3 billion, which is comprised of debt assumption of approximately $1.0 billion and the balance in a combination of cash and membership interests. Blackstone will contribute approximately 80% of the remaining equity requirements with the balance split evenly between Columbia Pacific and Emeritus. The Blackstone Group bid $1.25 billion Monday to buy 145 senior living centers from Salem-based Sunwest Management. Emeritus anticipates that its initial contribution will be a minimum of $17.4 million, including other contributions for working capital and capital expenditure requirements, and would increase to as much as $34.2 million if there is no participation by existing Sunwest investors.
At least 15 lenders to various Sunwest entities objected to the sale. Many of the Sunwest’s banks have objected to the entire restructuring, which prohibited them from repossessing the collateral — individual assisted-living centers — put up by the Sunwest affiliates after they defaulted on their loans.
Blackstone made the offer to purchase Sunwest in August 2009. It partnered with Seattle-based Emeritus Senior Living, which will take over management of the Sunwest facilities.