Ohio Nursing Home Employees Charged with Involuntary Manslaughter

Understanding Elder Abuse in Ohio

Ohio nursing homes and long-term care facilities consistently rank as some of the worst in the nation. In fact, there are approximately 15,000 cases of physical, sexual, and financial elder abuse reported in Ohio each year. Sadly, that number doesn’t account for the unreported cases because nursing home staffers try to hide incidents of abuse and manipulate data to protect their jobs and the facility’s reputation. A 2010 statewide assessment estimates that about 115,000 seniors are neglected, abused, and exploited by their trained caretakers. But how is this allowed to happen?

We may be able to attribute these alarming statistics to the following facts:

  • Most nursing home facilities are operated as for-profit organizations
  • Nursing assistants in Ohio only require 75 hours of training
  • Ohio has a comparatively limited number of state nursing home inspectors
  • Each resident is allotted a minimum of 2.5 hours of nursing staff time per day (Ohio Administrative Code 3701-17-08)

All these factors and more contribute to a dangerous environment for facility residents.

The Case

A recent investigation of Whetstone Gardens and Care Center in Columbus, Ohio revealed that staffers have been fatally neglecting and harming their patients. In February 2017, a patient didn’t receive medical care after developing a dangerous case of skin necrosis. The man was finally admitted to a hospital on March 1, 2017, but tragically passed away from septic shock a mere five days later.

In a press release, Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost reported that six of the facility’s employees and a contracted certified nurse practitioner have been indicted on a total of 34 charges, including involuntary manslaughter and gross patient neglect. The three nurses charged with involuntary manslaughter are Kimberly Potter, Jessica Caldwell, and Sandra Blazer. The indictment also claims that nursing home staffers falsified a patient’s medical file and documented treatments that were never actually provided.  Yost declared, “This case goes to the heart of protecting the unprotected. These victims were completely dependent on others for day-to-day care, which their families trusted Whetstone Gardens to provide. Instead of providing that care, evidence shows these nurses forced the victims to endure awful mistreatment and then lied about it.”

Protect Your Loved One Today

Thousands of families rely on nursing homes to provide their elderly loved ones with consistent care, round-the-clock attention, and effective medical services. Unfortunately, Ohio nursing homes still have a long way to go, and the only way to spark change is to hold them legally and financially accountable for their acts of negligence and cruelty. If you believe that your loved one is being abused at a nursing care facility, contact the Baltimore nursing home abuse and neglect lawyers at Brown & Barron, LLC. Our experienced legal team can investigate your case, compile evidence, and help you hold the nursing home liable for their misconduct. With our guidance, you can recover essential compensation that facilitates your loved one’s overall recovery.

We’re available to you 24/7. Contact Brown & Barron, LLC at (410) 698-1717 to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation today.

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