Certified Nurse Assistant, Fiona Jennings, was arrested on charges of endangering the welfare of a nursing home resident at Schuyler Ridge Residential Healthcare. The resident was a 74 year old woman prone to falls due to her recent knee fracture. Jennings failed to properly care for the resident resulting in bruising and swelling to her forehead as well as two black eyes.
On February 20, 2015 Jennings was placing the resident into bed with a mechanical lift when the resident fell, resulting in her injuries. The resident fell because Jennings did not follow the proper protocol while using the lift; the home’s policy requires two individuals present when using the lift. In addition to not adhering to the policy, Jennings did not report the incident to her supervisor which is required by policy. Even more offensive, she asked a fellow staff member to assist her with a cover-up. She wanted the other staff member to lie by stating that she helped Jennings with the lift. An investigation revealed the true events that occurred that day. As a result of the investigation, Jennings was formally charged with Endangering the Welfare of an Incompetent of Physically Disabled Person in the First Degree and Willful Violations of Health Laws. As a result of this, Jennings was terminated immediately.
The staff and administration of Schuyler Ridge discovered the accident and began an in-house investigation, terminated Jennings, and then reported the accident to the Department of Health and the attorney general’s office. The director of communications said the aid was terminated the day the incident was discovered. Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman stated that New Yorkers expect their loved ones to be given the proper care and that his team, Medicaid Fraud Unit, will do what it takes to ensure that care is received.
The Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU) has been tasked with investigating and prosecuting health care fraud and abuse. Nursing homes are partially funded by state Medicaid funds, causing NY state to have a deeply rooted interest in their success. In addition to investigating nursing homes, MFCU is also responsible for investigating and prosecuting other Medicaid providers such as hospitals, pharmacies and physicians.
If you or a loved one has been injured at a nursing home due to abuse and neglect, contact an experienced nursing home attorney who will be able to advise you on how to proceed with a potential law suit. Call the Law Offices of Thomas L. Gallivan, PLLC today!