We have long written about the growing issue of elder abuse in nursing homes. And, while nursing home abuse makes headlines on an ongoing basis, the headlines this deplorable practice has garnered have not slowed news of elder abuse. Take, for instance, recent news involving a Bronx nursing home accused of abusing a female resident.
With the senior population growing and living longer and with the elderly among our most vulnerable citizens, concern for the care of this country’s seniors is significantly important and relevant. More and more, people are finding themselves faced with the challenging decision of placing older relatives and loved ones in nursing homes.
The woman’s granddaughter says that she believed her grandmother was being abused at the Gold Crest Care Center in the Bronx, New York, said ABC Eyewitness News. She hid a camera in her grandmother’s room to gain a better understanding of what was happening inside the Bronx nursing home after noticing strange marks and bruises on her 89-year-old grandmother’s body.
Diana Valentin said she was shocked at what her hidden camera revealed. Ana Louisa Medina was helpless, unable to defend herself, and being abused by a nurse’s aide at Gold Crest Care Center, said Eyewitness News. Medina suffers from dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. “They were telling me she had gotten the bruising on her hands by banging on the bed railing,” Valentin told Eyewitness News.
It was the lack of response from Gold Crest Care Center that prompted Valentin to conceal a camera within the plastic base of a plant in her grandmother’s room. Valentin said she recorded more than 600 hours of footage. “The first video that I saw, she grabbed my grandmother’s arm, twisted it back, lifted her off the bed and slammed her into the bed,” Valentin told Eyewitness News. The “she” is 55-year-old nurse’s aide, Sandra Kerr. Kerr has since been arrested, was charged with endangering the welfare of a physically disabled person, and was released on her own recognizance. Eyewitness News went to Kerr’s home, but no one was there and has been unable to reach nursing home administrators for comment.
Valentin is not releasing video of the alleged abuse due to pending criminal and civil cases, telling Eyewitness News, “I viewed the video on a Sunday and a Monday morning I was at the nursing home, and I requested that they transfer her to the emergency room because my grandmother was not safe there.” Her grandmother is now being cared for in a nursing home in New Rochelle, New York. “She basically took care of me. I was very close to her, so now it’s my turn to take care of her,” Valentin said, telling Eyewitness News that Gold Crest Care Center fired three other workers due to the investigation.
Sadly, families seeking care of elderly family members are often left with very limited options, a scary prospect in today’s environment in which reports of nursing home abuse are rising. A devastating indignity that attacks these defenseless members of society on all levels abuse encompasses physical, emotional, chemical, financial, medical, and sexual maltreatment. Not just abuse, but also neglect, mocking, and even workers who have abused residents as part of pranks against each other are becoming more and more commonplace.
We have written about a number of nursing home neglect lawsuits that the national law firm, Parker Waichman LLP, has filed against a number of facilities on behalf of residents who have suffered severe, sometimes permanent, injuries. Parker Waichman has long been dedicated to protecting the rights of nursing home abuse and negligence victims and has, among other measures to protect this vulnerable demographic, prepared a number of video blogs, such as this one.