The story is one of the most tragic our nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys have heard in years. A series of horrifying acts of neglect on behalf of Aperion Care Moline resulted in the August strangulation death of a male resident. Multiple distress calls were made by the man’s roommate when he realized the now-deceased was entangled in the straps of his nightgown after they had become wrapped around the foot of his bed. It took nearly 20 minutes before a CNA finally arrived. Upon arrival, the CNA noticed the man had turned blue and was not breathing. Instead of offering immediate care to the strangled victim, Aperion Care Moline nursing staff wasted precious time attempting to figure out if the victim had a Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) order. He did not. According to an Illinois Department of Health investigation, the CNA rolled the man on his side and allegedly did not perform CPR because he was vomiting. By the time emergency medical personnel arrived, the patient was gone.
Upon learning of the incident this morning, Levin & Perconti spoke about the Aperion Care Moline strangulation death with a national CPR expert who teaches CPR to physicians, nurses, CNAs and laypeople across the country. Current CPR teaching indicates that in the event of vomiting, you must turn a patient’s head to clear their airway and once clear, begin CPR if the patient is not breathing. Vomiting is NOT cause to rule out CPR. It has also been reported that not all Aperion Care Moline CNAs were trained in CPR and that the facility did not have a fully stocked crash cart, missing both portable suction equipment and supplies needed to give an IV.
Levin & Perconti: Top Illinois Attorneys for Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect
Frederick Frankel, general counsel for Aperion Care, told Moline paper Dispatch Argus, “This was a fluke accident that occurred.” He also told the paper that he doesn’t think CNAs are required to be trained in CPR, a serious mistake in the opinion of our CPR expert. Allowing staff to work in environments where the need for CPR is a real possibility, not properly training them to perform CPR, and not giving them all the necessary tools to perform resuscitation is asking for tragedy to strike. It’s simply bad business and shows an appalling disregard for patient care and safety.
Aperion Care is a large operator of nursing homes in Illinois, with 32 homes currently carrying the Aperion Care name. The nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys of Levin and Perconti have successfully resolved a large number of cases against Aperion Care nursing homes and have many more pending. To most people, a “fluke” is a one in a million event. A chance occurrence that just happens with no ability to be predicted or prevented. To call the strangulation death of a man a fluke is an insult to the deceased and those who are now grieving over the unnecessary and tragic loss of their loved one. If this were truly a fluke, why are there so many instances of neglect and abuse against residents of Aperion Care Moline and many of the other facilities Aperion Care owns throughout the state of Illinois? Shocked? It’s all public record. Have a look through the quarterly violation reports for nursing facilities, courtesy of the Illinois Department of Public Health. You will almost always find an Aperion Care facility listed as an offender.
Through our lawsuits against Aperion, Levin and Perconti has become very familiar with how Aperion Care conducts business, their corporate structure, and their unspoken policy of understaffing, which leads to high nurse and CNA turnover. The problem with understaffing and transiency among nursing staff is not only the obvious lack of proper supervision for residents, but also the lack of cohesive training and communication that occurs with a robust, experienced nursing staff. Nursing is inherently a team profession and patient health and wellness flourishes under the care of a well-trained, competent staff.
Strangulation Deaths and Other Forms of Abuse at Aperion Care
IDPH reports that Aperion Care Moline was fined just $50,000 for the series of neglectful actions that led to the strangulation death of a resident. The same facility was also found responsible for allowing a man to escape in October in 38 degree temps. He was found wandering down a nearby road. They were fined just $25,000 for that incident. To our readers, after nearly 30 years representing those grieving from the loss of a loved one due to wandering, strangulation, and other cases of abuse and neglect, please know this: Tragedies in nursing homes are rarely “flukes.” They are the result of conscious business decisions to understaff, undertrain, and underpay employees, leading to inexperienced, overwhelmed, and frustrated nursing staff. Your loved one should never have to be the victim of management decisions that override a commitment to caring for those in their golden years.
If you have a loved one who died as the result of strangulation or suffocation in a nursing home, please let the nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys of Levin & Perconti get justice for you. Our experience with strangulation lawsuits and in particular, cases against Aperion Care facilities, gives us a distinct advantage in getting the truth and securing the best possible result for you and your loved one.
Consultations with our attorneys are always free and confidential. Please call us at 312-332-2872 or complete our online case evaluation form. Responses to inquiries are immediate.