Assisted Living Facility Fined over Alleged Theft of Resident's Pills and Money
An assisted living community has been charged $700 in fines resulting from two cases involving missing narcotics and cash stolen from residents. The facility is under investigation regarding the possible theft of both the cash and the drugs.
On June 12, the Department of Human Services began an investigation into the assisted living facility. Investigators found that between June 5 and July 5, seven residents had reported $1,152 in cash and 40 narcotics pills missing. According to DHS, the facility notified the police and tested employees for drugs.
The Police Department and the company which owns the facility are working together to determine who took the money. The vice president of the company said "so far no employees have been fired because it's not clear who took the money and pills."
He also mentioned that the thief could be a visitor, a resident or even an unknown person unaffiliated with the staff or the facility.
However DHS still holds the facility responsible. "The facility failed to provide a safe and secure environment resulting in the theft of money and property from multiple residents," DHS Corrective Action Unit manager wrote in the penalty notice. "This failure is a violation of resident rights, is considered neglect of care and constitutes abuse."
On Nov. 3, a resident at again reported some of their pills missing. The resulting investigation showed 50 narcotic pills were missing, as well as the information sheets that accompanied them. Rather than being treated as a theft, as the missing pills in July had been, this incident was handled as negligence after one employee told investigators that they don't always count pills correctly.
For the theft during the summer, DHS fined the facility $400, and for the missing pills last month, another $300 was added. Neither amount has to be paid immediately because the facility is currently experiencing financial troubles. In the meantime, residents have been reimbursed for money and pills that were lost or stolen and the assisted living facility is still looking for the alleged thief. for more, read the story.
Robert W. Carter,
Jr. is a Virginia attorney whose law practice is dedicated to
protecting the rights of the victims of nursing home and assisted
living neglect and abuse in Richmond, Roanoke, Norfolk, Lynchburg,
Danville, Charlottesville, and across Virginia.
Posted on Tue, January 5, 2010
by Kristie Pierce