Quincy nursing home fined after reported mental abuse by staffer

By Herald-Whig
Posted: Jan. 25, 2019 1:30 pm Updated: Jan. 25, 2019 10:52 pm

QUINCY -- A Quincy nursing home has been fined after a staff member reportedly slapped a baby doll belonging to a resident who suffered from dementia.

The Illinois Department of Public Health issued the $2,200 fine to St. Vincent's Home for the incident. The fine was released as part of the department's fourth quarter report of nursing home violations.

The report alleges that on June 24, an unnamed certified nursing assistant purposefully riled up the resident by taking one of her baby dolls and hitting it.

Read the Statement of Deficiencies and Plan of Correction here.

The resident had been diagnosed with dementia, anxiety and depression, and suffered from confusion and short- and long-term memory impairment.

Brian Inman, assistant administrator at the home, said the incident constituted mental abuse.

"The employee involved was suspended pending the investigation and then terminated," Inman said.

The report indicates that other staffers did not immediately report the incident per state regulations.

Three certified nursing assistants, including the employee in question, were in the resident's room to provide care to her roommate.

One of her co-workers said that all staff are aware that the resident considered her three baby dolls her children and doesn't want anyone to touch them.

Another co-worker, who was working his second evening at the facility, said the baby doll, which was the resident's favorite, was setting on a box of tissues, when the worker grabbed the baby doll and smacked its head in front of the resident telling her co-workers it was "how to keep from being bored during a shift."

The resident said "don't do that" and "no" sternly. She grimaced and reached for the baby doll.

"Oh, sometimes we toss her dolls on her bed, and it riled her up," the CNA in question said during a June 25 abuse investigation interview. "It's kind of cute but probably not to the resident. Then we have to fix them for her."

A member of the resident's family said the woman is unable to remember the names of her children.

"Those baby dolls are her everything," they said. "I know this (slapping the baby doll) would have really disturbed her. She thinks those baby dolls are her babies."

The director of nursing told the Department of Public Health that the worker underwent dementia training but still made a decision to upset the resident.

St. Vincent's Home also was fined $2,200 for failing to promptly address inadequately controlled pain and notify the attending physician for reconsideration of approaches and management for a resident who was admitted after experiencing a fall at home.

Inman said the patient's attending physician provided a statement to the Department of Public Health that the pain was unavoidable because of the patient's diagnosis, but the department disagreed.

Sunset Home in Quincy also was fined $2,200 after a resident suffered a fractured wrist in a fall. The report says that the resident needed staff assistance to use the restroom, but none was available when she attempted to use the restroom by herself.