IDPH has cited and fined Countryside Nursing & Rehab in Dolton after a female resident was sexually abused by a male resident from that facility.
One of the basic items that families look to nursing homes to do is to protect their families members from being injured, abused, or otherwise taken advantage of while they are at the nursing home. The staff is always a source of concern for families, but the potential for abuse does not begin and end with the staff – residents can be perpetrators of abuse as well …. and that is what the situation was here.
The incident which served as the basis for the citation began with a nurse observing a female resident who suffered from advanced dementia walking down the hallway with a sheet wrapped around her lower half, holding two dollars in her hand. When the nurse asked her what happened and where the money came from, the resident was not able to explain exactly what had occurred, but from the discussion, the staff was able to identify a male resident. The male resident was summoned, at which point the female resident said that this was the man who raped her.
For his part, the male resident stated that the sex between them was consensual and that he would give her money or provide her with sweets such as a cupcake or pop after having sex. The two men that he shared a room with told staff that he would bring an older lady into the room and could hear them having sex and never heard her say no.
The female resident was sent to the hospital for a rape exam. The police investigator sent to the emergency room was unable to interview her due to her mental state.
Nursing home residents are adults, and as such, are actually free to engage in romantic relationships of their own choosing. But for this to occur, both of the residents have to be able to consent to enter into that kind of relationship. If one of the residents is not capable of consent due to declines in their mental, intellectual, or psychological condition, then sexual activity involving another resident as here is actually a form of nursing home abuse – even where the staff is not the perpetrator of the abuse.
Where there is a potential for a resident to be the victim abuse, this is something that must be addressed in the resident care plan. A care plan would include such items as keeping the resident under direction observation to keep the resident from being victimized. Failing to do that is something that would serve as a basis for a nursing home abuse and neglect lawsuit.
One of our core beliefs is that nursing homes are built to fail due to the business model they follow and that unnecessary accidental injuries and wrongful deaths of nursing home residents are the inevitable result. Order our FREE report, Built to Fail, to learn more about why. Our experienced Chicago nursing home lawyers are ready to help you understand what happened, why, and what your rights are. Contact us to get the help you need.
Other blog posts of interest: