Personal Injury

Oklahoma nursing home faces fines for endangering patients

A Norman, Okla., nursing home could face fines of up to $3,000 a day for numerous deficiencies, including allegations of not fully investigating abuse allegations and endangering patients’ health by not providing condoms to a sexually active, HIV-positive patient, according to KTUL-TV.

State investigators cited 16 infractions in a 370-page report released earlier this month.

One abuse claim stems from a patient, Carol Crow, who was found by family members covered in bruises on her face, around her neck and completely down her chest. Crow’s family is convinced that Crow was attacked, but the nursing home disputes that claim, insisting that she simply fell.

Another allegation of abuse, detailed in five pages of the report, is of patient who claimed he was hit by another resident day after day. His femur and hip were broken in the attacks, and he died a month later.

“In my opinion, we need a new owner of this facility who’s going to take action for the residents in their care,” says Wes Bledsoe of the Oklahoma Health Department that investigated the claims and filed the report.

The Health Department is recommending Whispering Pines not be allowed to accept any new Medicare and Medicaid patients until the deficiencies are corrected. If the center isn’t in compliance within six months its Medicare and Medicaid payments for existing patients could be cut off.

Whispering Pines has presented a plan to the Department of Health stating that it will correct all violations by Nov. 28.