Three Workers In Unlicensed Facility Found Guilty Of Neglect
Victims Reportedly Malnourished And Living In Filth
Facility Lacked License, Staff, And Equipment
Neglect of hospice patients is sadly an increasingly reported form of elder abuse and neglect. Patients in hospice care are certified as suffering from terminal illness and have a medical prognosis of six or fewer months left to live. Medicare Benefit Policy Manual (CMS Pub. 1002). Hospice certification must be made by a physician, not a nurse or nurse practitioner. 42 C.F.R. § 418 et seq. Hospice care is typically provided by hospice agencies, licensed to provide hospice level of care. Unfortunately, there are hospice service providers that are not licensed and do not have staff qualified to provide the level of care provided. For example, a bedridden hospice patient must be turned and cleaned frequently to prevent pressure ulcers/bed sore. Pressure ulcers/bed sores, malnutrition, and poor personal hygiene are all signs of neglect. The neglect could be due to understaffing, unqualified providers, or an overall lack of oversight. Our litigators have experience with cases of hospice patients neglected or abandoned with untreated pressure wounds/bed sores and infections that turn fatal. The parties responsible for the condition and fatality should be held accountable. Evans Law Firm, Inc. represents injured seniors and their families here in Atherton and throughout California. We can be reached at (415)441-8669 or TOLL FREE 1-888-80EVANS (888-503-8267).
Three Hospice Workers Found Guilty Of Neglect
In a recently reported case an owner, his assistant, and a registered nurse were found guilty of “neglect and abuse of severely disabled elderly patients” at an unlicensed hospice facility in Riverside County, according to a press release from California Attorney general Rob Bonta’s office. The victims involved were six disabled residents of the unlicensed board and care facility, whose ages range from 32 to 66 years-old. Investigators reportedly found the victims “malnourished, living in filth, and without basic care in a house that did not have the staff, equipment, or licensing needed to care for the residents.” A jury trial was held that led to their convictions – the owner with four counts of felony elder abuse, facing around seven years in prison; his assistant with six counts of felony elder abuse, facing around nine years in prison; and the registered nurse with one misdemeanor count of elder abuse, facing up to six months in county jail.
The case was investigated by joint efforts of the California DOJ’s Division of Medi-Cal Fraud and Elder Abuse (DMFEA) and the Riverside Police Department; and later prosecuted by the DMFEA. “Caretakers of elderly and dependent adults have the responsibility of protecting their patients’ dignity, safety, and health. Instead, the victims in this case suffered horrific neglect and lack of care at the hands of those who were trusted with their well-being,” said Attorney General Bonta. “Let today’s conviction serve as a warning: We will not allow those who abuse California’s most vulnerable adults to get away with their despicable crimes,” he added.
Remedies For Injured Patients And Their Families
If you have a loved one who has suffered any kind of abuse or neglect in a hospice program, call us. Do not let warning signs like bruises, or personality changes, or silence pass by unnoticed. Always act on your instincts and call us if you suspect any problem. We know how to investigate cases of physical (and financial) elder abuse and how to pursue all remedies available under California law which include holding supervisors and owners responsible for neglect and abuse of institutionalized patients. Sometimes the ownership of for-profit hospice programs or facilities can be complicated. We have experience in piercing through any elaborate corporate structures to hold those accountable who profit from substandard care. Awards may include attorneys’ fees and expenses you’ve incurred in bringing your case. We will hold all parties responsible for the abuse to count, including owners of home health care agencies and owners, administrators and supervisors in nursing homes and other care facilities.
You can reach Ingrid M. Evans at (415) 441-8669, or by email at email@example.com or TOLL FREE 1-888-80EVANS (888-503-8267).
 Evans Law Firm, Inc. was not involved in the reported case in any way.