A female resident at Frankfort Terrace Nursing Center in Frankfort, Illinois is suing the for-profit facility for allowing a known sexual harasser to continue to freely wander the building, despite previous knowledge of his tendency to harass women.
The victim says that in August 2015, the offender, Roger Martin, showed her his genitals and used slang terms to tell her he was going to have sex with her. The victim says that she notified Frankfort Terrace’s Director of Nursing, who made no mention of the incident in Mr. Martin’s chart, nor made any attempt to investigate the incident. The lawsuit alleges that the lack of follow through by the facility is especially egregious, given that the facility was aware of Mr. Martin’s past sexual harassment of other female residents.
Illinois Department of Public Health Investigation
In 2015, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) investigated Frankfort Terrace for various shortcomings, including allegations of sexual harassment among residents. The report did not cite a name, but specifically addressed verbal sexual harassment and unwanted touching by one male resident, which required Frankfort Terrace to take action and report back to the IDPH with their Plan of Correction. The facility responded by saying the man responsible for sexual harassment at their facility was no longer a resident. The facility also stated that all staff, including security, had received training on documenting residents’ whereabouts and activities at 15 minute intervals. The documentation, as claimed by Frankfort Terrace, is checked 3x weekly to verify that staff are completing their duties.
While the name of the sexual harasser was withheld in the IDPH report, many wonder if he was the man at the center of the IDPH’s sexual harassment investigation. It is also unclear as to the exact date of the investigation, leading to the question of whether it occurred before or after the victim reported Mr. Martin to Frankfort Terrace.
Facility Failed to Submit Staffing Data to CMS
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the government entity responsible for funding, overseeing and evaluating nursing homes, operates a rating database of all nursing homes in the country that receive federal funding. The database, Nursing Home Compare, is a valuable tool when deciding on the right place to care for a loved one. While it certainly cannot provide the full picture of the quality of a facility, it helps families get an idea of the areas of strengths and weaknesses in order to make an informed decision. In light of the recent sexual harassment lawsuit, it is not shocking to discover that Frankfort Terrace has failed to provide staffing data to CMS for ‘two consecutive deadlines.’ Knowledge of staffing measures is essential in getting a feel for the level of individualized care a nursing home can provide. One of the most common issues plaguing nursing homes today is the lack of adequate staff members for the number of residents.
Leaders in Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Law
The nursing home abuse attorneys of Chicago, Illinois-based Levin & Perconti have secured numerous verdicts and settlements for victims of wandering, including $1 million for the family of a 54 year old woman who was able to wander a nursing home and fall from a fifth-story window. Wandering, especially for those with a prior history, is a situation that nursing home staff are expected to prevent.
If you have a loved one who has suffered injuries resulting from wandering a long-term care facility, either due to their own personal wandering or from a fellow resident who was allowed to wander unsupervised, please contact the nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys of Levin & Perconti for a free consultation.