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Nursing home neglect found in Orange County investigations

Entrusting a loved one to a nursing home or long-term facility often comes with a mix of emotions. While it can become increasingly wearisome to manage the care of an elderly family member, it can also be difficult to entrust them to strangers. A recent state audit has found that in-house investigations involving nursing home neglect in several counties, including Orange County, frequently disregard a full and proper investigation into the allegations.

This state audit falls in line with recent allegations against a developmental center in Porterville, California. Several patients have accused a nursing assistant of several forms of abuse, including choking, battery and rape. The California Department of Health conducted an investigation against the center and ultimately revoked the license of the offending nurses' assistant.

Shortly after the revocation, the assistant was terminated from his position at the center. According to the Public Health Department, the same assistant has six allegations of abuse against him during a five-year span. However, that same assistant is appealing the decision and, if he wins, could be back at the same developmental center where the allegations took place.

Although the nursing assistant has faced several abuse allegations, he has never been criminally charged. While several years have passed, the developmental center has never been penalized for allowing some of the incidents to occur. The Center for Investigative Reporting has been involved in the case, and is playing a part in unearthing more information and pushing the case into the spotlight.

These types of situations are probably one of the last things a family placing a loved one into a nursing home or developmental center wants to read about. Stories of nursing home neglect in Orange County may prompt families to concentrate on initial research, and be more involved in day-to-day care. If a person currently resides in an assisted care facility, then they should know their rights as an individual being cared for in this way.

Source: SFGate, Delays, inaction in state care center's abuse case, Ryan Gabrielson, Nov. 30, 2013

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