I recently came across an article in the Santa Rosa Press Democrat titled “Despicable People”. Obviously I was intrigued. But as I continued to read the article, I was hardly surprised to find out that it was about a Petaluma nursing home that was fined $100,000 for poor care and neglect of a 76-year-old woman.
According to the newspaper article, her husband and daughter placed Mary Keel at Pleasant Care Convalescent Home after the woman suffered a stroke. Now, our firm, Bisnar Chase Personal Injury Attorneys, has represented numerous victims of nursing home abuse and negligence. But this is one of the worst stories I’ve ever heard. Apparently, Keel’s sat in dirty clothes unchanged for weeks and was even allowed to eat her meals as she sat on soiled diapers! State investigators found 17 violations in that nursing home in connection with Keel’s death.
The facility is also reportedly one of 30 owned by Pleasant Care Corp., a La Canada-based company, which is in legal and financial hot water after many of its facilities were found to be far below state standards. And I’ll bet most of these sub-standard facilities were also understaffed. That’s how unscrupulous nursing homes, that don’t care whether people live or die, make their big bucks. They literally build their castles over the tombstones of those they were supposed to serve.
And it’s not as if they do it for free. Families pay good money to place their loved ones in these facilities. In fact, this article states that the Keels paid a “base rate of $5,400 per month.” And I know from personal experience, that more than money, it’s emotionally hard for families to make that decision.
Pleasant Care’s problems started in 2003 when the company was cited in at least three other deaths at homes in Northern California. As recently as June it paid a penalty of $80,000 in connection with the death of another resident in a Norwalk nursing home. What’s more – last year, the same company paid $1.3 million to settle a lawsuit brought by the California Justice Department, which accused the company of negligence – simply not taking care of numerous residents.
This is not just disgraceful or despicable behavior. It’s immoral and inhuman. This nursing home put this woman through hell, stripping her of her dignity in her sunset years and hastening her final exit. I sincerely hope her family decides to sue this company and that they get the compensation they deserve.
Some companies only respond to the bottom line. Make it more profitable for a nursing home to take care of their patients the way they should, and they will respond and provide better care. How do you do that? Sue them when they neglect a patient. All of the sudden its short staffing and poor care don’t pay. They’ll have a financial incentive to keep from being sued.
If your family member has been neglected or abused by a nursing home, call in a nursing home abuse legal team of your own. Most every law firm that handles these cases will provide a free, confidential consultation. Not only that, they will charge a fee only if they recover money. We will even advance the costs if we are representing your family. Call us right now for an appointment. Making a negligent nursing home pay will prevent abuse to others. John Bisnar – 800-259-6373.