In a report released April 27, 2012, the Department of Health released its deficiency report for Brooklyn United Methodist Church Home. Amongst several failures in the area of disaster preparedness, the report details that the facility failed to promptly deliver mail to its residents. This right is manifested in the Code of Federal Regulations, 483.10(i)(1).
A resident interviewed by the DOH informed the department that residents receive mail only Monday through Friday. Mail that is delivered to the facility on Saturdays does not reach the nursing home patients until sometime on Mondays.
This is a far cry from some of the more harmful topics that this blog often touches on, such as pressure ulcers, falls, and medication errors. Yet, it is still a guaranteed right for residents of a nursing home facility. Additionally, for some of these elderly individuals, the mail is one of their few means of human interaction with the outside world. Communication is vital for these patients, notably in patients dealing with issues such as depression, Alzheimer’s or dementia, or other mental illness. Although, as the DOH reports, there is potential for no more than minimal harm inherent in this violation, ideally Brooklyn United Methodist will find a way to remedy this issue sooner rather than later.
The full report on Brooklyn United Methodist, including several safety violations, can be read here.