CT Now, through a partnership with Connecticut Health I-Team, released the latest list of state nursing homes to be fined by the Department of Public Health. All incidents occurred in 2014.

In one incident, a resident whose chronic constipation was supposed to be monitored for vomiting and abdominal discomfort died at the Ledge Crest Health Care Center in Berlin. However, between nursing staff not monitoring the patient’s condition, with no records of tests done, and the resident being admitted into the hospital, there is no clear evidence regarding what transpired at the home.

As we pointed out in a blog post last week, Ledge Crest’s parent company, Apple Rehab, based in Rocky Hill, has a history of Department of Public Health citations.

In addition, Westport Health Care Center, Aaron Manor Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Chester, and Noble Horizons of Salisbury were also fined for incidents ranging from negligence and injury-causing falls to verbal abuse. In one particular case of staff irresponsibility, a resident’s condition hadn’t been thoroughly managed, and multiple female patients were inappropriately touched as a result.

It’s a shock, to say the least, when you find out your family member has been abused or severely neglected at a facility you trusted for attentive and adequate care. While most Connecticut nursing homes have a good performance record, meaning they have not been issued a Class A or B citation from the Department of Health, you can’t fully trust a rating. Instead, we pointed out last week:

1. Do an investigation yourself into the facility’s history, including finding out if the home has received a citation over the past three years and pulling inspection reports.

2. What is the staffing situation like? Nursing homes have a minimum requirement for the number of professionals on hand, but greater corporatization often means staff members get assigned too many tasks and patients, leading to possible negligence.