Wallingford Nursing Home Fined $7,500, Must Hire Monitor

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A Wallingford nursing home has been fined $7,500 by the state Department of Public Health for numerous violations and has been ordered to hire a nurse consultant to monitor its care of residents.

The nurse consultant will work for at least three months to ensure that sufficient nursing personnel are working at the Village Green of Wallingford Rehabilitation and Health Center, that residents are clean and comfortable, that doctors are notified of changes in residents’ conditions and that residents are free from abuse and neglect, records show.

The nursing home, formerly known as Brook Hollow Health Care, signed a consent order April 13, agreeing to the fine in the wake of multiple violations that were found at Village Green during unannounced state inspections on Oct. 27 and Oct. 30, 2014.

The inspectors found a failure to notify doctors of weight changes or when medication was not available, a failure to adequately investigate residents’ grievances, instances of abuse and neglect and a failure to maintain residents’ rooms in a clean, sanitary manner, DPH records show.

On Oct. 28, 2014, a licensed practical nurse said in a loud manner, “I’d like to slap her,’’ in front of one resident, DPH records show.

DPH also found that the home had failed to follow doctors’ orders, failed to provide proper respiratory care, failed to provide routine dental care, failed to ensure the proper care of medication and failed to provide meals in a timely fashion, records show.

Some employees told the inspectors that many problems, including missing treatments or late medication doses, were due to staff cuts in 2013. One resident was hospitalized with sepsis in December 2013, records show, because his or her gastric tube site was not consistently treated or cleaned. Other employees said they quit because the staffing levels had made the home unsafe, records show.

Executive Director Christine Fitzgerald, who was hired in March, said she and other new managers at the home are working closely with the nurse consultant.

“The health and welfare of our residents is always the first priority of the staff,’’ she said. “We have successfully addressed all of the points in the state survey.”

In an unrelated action in February, DPH fined Village Green $2,500 in connection with the death of a resident Feb. 4 who choked on a carrot, DPH records show. The resident was mistakenly given a meal of chopped food instead of pureed food, records show.

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