Long Island Nursing Home Staff And Owners Arrested For Neglect And Fraud
On February 11, 2014, police arrested nine Long Island nursing home employees on charges that their neglect caused the death of a 72-year-old resident in 2012. New York’s Attorney General charged that nursing home staff at Medford Multicare Center, Inc., in Medford, New York, did not follow doctors’ orders requiring the resident to be connected to a respirator at night, and failed to respond to repeated alarms indicating respiratory distress.
Staff members admitted they never read the doctor’s orders mandating night-time respirator treatment for the resident; totally disregarded repeated video and audio alarms signaling acute respiratory distress; and falsely claimed that the resident was alive and “looked up at me” when she had almost certainly been dead for several hours. The nursing home’s administrators later tried to cover up the staff’s criminal negligence by concealing computer records that documented the alarms.
The Attorney General also charged Medford’s owners with overseeing a pattern of neglect at the Long Island nursing home and with committing Medicaid fraud. According to the Attorney General’s lawsuit, the nursing home’s owners “systematically looted the facility by paying themselves at least $60 million” since opening the facility in 2003. During the same period, dozens of Medford staff were convicted of neglect and falsifying records in an effort to cover up their crimes.
In New York City and on Long Island, nursing home neglect and abuse, often accompanied by New York Medicare fraud, are widespread. Exact numbers of such incidents are very difficult to obtain. However, a 2011 study conducted for the New York State Office of Children and Family Services found a dramatic gap between the rate of elder abuse events reported by older New Yorkers and the number of cases referred to the formal elder abuse service system.
According to the study, elders reported abuse and neglect at a rate nearly 24 times higher than the number of cases referred to social service, law enforcement or legal authorities. An estimated 260,000 New Yorkers over age 60 suffered at least one incident of neglect or abuse in the year studied (2008-09).
Legal options for victims of nursing home abuse
When nursing home neglect is so common, and those responsible are punished so infrequently, New York families need trusted legal advisors to ensure their relatives are compensated for any neglect and get the care they need. The veteran trial lawyers at The Sanders Firm are experts in the field of nursing home neglect and abuse. We will investigate conditions at the nursing home, interview staff and residents, review medical and staffing records and obtain expert medical and financial guidance to determine whether the nursing home has abused or neglected a resident.
If we find that the nursing home has mistreated you or your relative we will seek compensation for the elder’s pain and suffering and future medical treatment. If a family member dies as a result of nursing home abuse or neglect, The Sanders Firm attorneys will pursue a case against the staff, doctors, and nursing home owners, to ensure that you receive compensation. Most importantly, our involvement can serve as a wake-up call for nursing home administrators, encouraging them to provide proper care and attention in the future.
NY medical malpractice attorneys at The Sanders Firm can help
Once we get involved, nursing homes often offer to settle our clients’ cases quickly, so families need not go to court to seek recovery for their losses. But if a case goes to trial, The Sanders Firm has the legal, medical, financial and investigatory expertise to pursue the maximum compensation for victims and families.
Our parents and grandparents deserve respect, attention, and proper care in their later years. Sadly, too many nursing homes in New York City and on Long Island violate the trust we place in them by neglecting or abusing residents.
Lawyers at The Sanders Firm can help. If you have a relative who may have suffered such neglect, please contact us for a free case evaluation to help you determine the best course to follow. Call us any time, night or day, at 1-800 FAIR PLAY (800 324-7752). Resources
- NY State Office of the Attorney General, “A.G. Schneiderman Announces Arrests Of Suffolk County Nursing Home Employees And Lawsuit Against The Home’s Owners Alleging Pattern Of Neglect,” Feb. 11, 2014, http://www.ag.ny.gov/press-release/ag-schneiderman-announces-arrests-suffolk-county-nursing-home-employees-and-lawsuit
- National Center on Elder Abuse, 2012, Abuse of Residents of Long-Term Facilities, http://www.ncea.aoa.gov/Resources/Publication/docs/NCEA_LTCF_ResearchBrief_2013.pdf
- Mark Lachs, MD, MPH, J. Berman PhD, et al., “Under the Radar: New York State Elder Abuse Prevalence Study,” May 2011, http://www.lifespan-roch.org/documents/UndertheRadar051211.pdf