60 years in prison!!! - page 2

Is it just me or does the possibility of 60 years in prison seem a bit harsh for negligence under these circumstances. If you wonder what I am talking about read the Nurse Aid charged with drowning... Read More

  1. by   Rustyhammer
    Huge corporations now dish out the health care to the portion of our population which should be the most revered.
    I am employed by one of these "McDonalds" and am part of the adminstration in the building.
    All too often the focus is put on budget and actual Pt. issues are secondary.
    Having worked LTC for the majority of my career I realize that this is what is acceptable to America and the good folks who work LTC do so because of the love they have for those they serve, their pts.
    Who among us doesn't do their job and at least one other persons. If a CNA calls in for that day then the others carry the load! To refuse the assignment means a write-up or discharge! These CNA'S (and licensed staff) NEED their job!
    Overall, nursing homes have come a long way but brothers and sisters they have a long way to go!

    -Russell
  2. by   mustangsheba
    Agree with Peeps - she shouldn't have accepted the assignment. HOWEVER, premeditaged murderers get 20 years and are out on the streets in 7 years. Go figure!
  3. by   coff51
    If the aide had refused to accept every assignment that was unsafe--she'd never work. Mind you a written statement that acknowledges that fact and states she's taking the assignment against her better judgement may cover her in the event of problems. IF superiors are notified of her reluctance to take the load. But even that gets old, to keep documenting and have it thrown into a file soon forgotten. I still say that the administrations only understand $$$ in their wallets--and if it means cutting corners in patient care or sending an overworked aide up the river to save their necks, they'll do it. Besides, they've got the insurance companies in their back pocket also, to provide them w/ plenty of clients who may be aware of the situation, but are restricted from their policies to go anywhere else! Oh, Grandma, it's not what it used to be...
  4. by   dlgg
    I think it is sad that the situation happened in the first place. A life was lost because someone didn't use just plain common sense. I can't imagine deciding to bathe someone when I was the ONLY person responsible for ALL of them. These people were mentally and/or physically handicapped, maybe both. Due to their disabilities this is like leaving children to attend to themselves. If this had been a mother who left her baby in the tube while she did a little housekeeping in the adjacent room(which is what this nurses aid said she was doing) and the baby drown, people would be saying that 60 years was justified. Common sense has to come into play here. Is it critical that a patient have their whirlpool bath on a day when you are the only one working ? No, her whirlpool bath was not critical. She used poor judgement. Do I think that the administration should be punished as well, YES!!!!! But we in the healthcare profession have always been taught that if something doesn't seem right to us, we have the RESPONSIBILITY to question it. Even if that means question a doc about an order or refusing to take an assignment that is unsafe for our own liability or our patients life.I think what happened with this situation is that it wasn't the first time this nurses aid was left alone to care for these people and maybe in the past all went well and she thought she could handle it, but STUFF HAPPENS ! Personally, I would have made sure that every patient was safe, fed, and not sitting in their own excrement, had their required medications and if necessary call the administration and tell them someone needs to come in and assist me or i would call the state in or leave.
  5. by   Peeps Mcarthur
    dlgg,
    I agree. You spread yourself out as far as you can do it safely.
    The lowest common denominator of care that will at least give your patients comfort and not put them in danger.

    If that happens to be refusal of the assingment, then that is up to you.
    Believe me, nobody is going to agree with you. The administators(as in this horrific example) aren't being prosecuted. The coworkers that didn't help with the workload aren't being prosecuted. The charge nurse that dished out the assingment is not being prosecuted.

    If you turn down an assingment, the work must be reassinged evenly, administrators must pay an agency or hire someone, coworkers must pick up the slack.
    No, that won't ever be a situation when you would expect much support, but then, if they had to do that everytime you got screwed with such a patient load, they would at least stop trying to give you those assingments. They would just give you "the mark"........."they're not a team player"
    I'll bet that nurses aid was a "team player" before they abandoned her to stand trial for a crime they all had a role in commiting.


    Brad,
    Columbia, MD
  6. by   fergus51
    Did you all see the article about the 2 nurses in Ontario who have been criminally charged for a little girl's death? Any thoughts?
  7. by   GERINRS
    All of us nurses need to make a stand! I am an LPN who feels that something needs to be done about the demands of nurses. It's no wonder there is such a shortage of nurses. What about the state board "standards" that we are expected to follow? I wonder if these people who make all the rules and regulations, have ever followed all of these impractical rules. I realize that there needs to be standards, but come on!
  8. by   thisnurse
    i agree with digs wholeheartedly.
    you know the thing that bothers me the most about this is that the CNA went into the room and saw her patient face down in the water. whether or not she does that all of the time, she should have checked to make sure the patient was only playing.
    i would have and i think most people would as well. this CNA did not, she just assumed she was ok and left her again.
    bathing a patient like that when you know you are understaffed and then checking on her, seeing her face down in the water, and leaving is negligence
    in my mind.
    i think the facility should be charged for being substandard but they are not responsible for the actions of this CNA. she made her own choices.

    60 years is ridiculous. she used bad judgement and lacked common sense but thats not a "crime".
    i feel bad for her...i really do. i dont think she should spend any time in jail. thats crazy.
    i feel bad for the pateints family as well.

    as the nursing shortage increases, and the enterance requirements for CNA's decreases, we are going to be hearing more and more stories like this.
  9. by   Jenny P
    I wonder how many times this CNA was the only one to staff this unit in the past? I have a suspicion that she thought she was trying to help her patients/ clients; and had this happen before. We, as RNs and LPNs, realize that our licenses may be jeopordised by staffing situations such as this. Does a CNA realize what could happen to themselves in such a situation? Was this CNA thinking of those in her care? Probably, she felt sorry for the patients and was trying to do the best she could. The newspaper article stated that this facility was severely understaffed. And it also stated that a relative of the drowned patient said she often put her head under water during and after baths and enjoyed it. I just think there are too many problems here for the CNA to be totally guilty of this death. The facility should be charged with the felony; the CNA may have some part of the negligence; but should not be sentenced to prison for it.
  10. by   thisnurse
    that would all depend on whether or not the bath was a mandated part of the CNA's care. if the home required this CNA to bathe that patient on her shift then maybe. however, it seems to me that she took it upon herself to do it for whatever reason. it might have been that she just wanted to make this patient happy. i am not saying that she is a bad CNA, i am saying she used poor judgement.

    look at it this way. say you were the RN in charge of that patient. the CNA tells you she is going to bathe the patient. you dont think anything of it and just tell her ok. you think she is in the room with the patient. you dont know she is in the next room. the patient dies. now YOU are responsible for what YOUR cna did without your knowledge. who would be negligent there...you or the CNA?


    i cant imagine going into a room, seeing a pt face down in the water and NOT making sure she was ok. regardless of her doing that all the time.

    this CNA is probably a wonderful woman who will now have to live with this "mistake" the rest of her life. i dont think she is going to do any time. at least i hope not.
  11. by   nakitamoon
    As Director of Nursing in an Assisted Living Facility, I feel the facility holds responsiblility as well as the state surveyors, for the drowning and placed the cna in an unsafe enviroment. The administrator or myself are responsible for accepting a resident into our facility and if they are innapropriate we do not accept them. It is my respsonsiblity to assure my staff can meet the needs ofany resident we admitt. I have a wonderful staff who are not afraid to let me know what they can handle and any problems they foresee. Assisted Living is not considered healthcare facility in the state of Florida and from the article I read the patient wasn't appropriate for assisted living and the staffing required along with 5 other residents who did not appear to be appropriate either. We assist our residents to function at thier highest level with as much independence as possible and provide a quality of life they would not have at home or in a skilled facility. I do believe that if my staff would find someone face down in the water and left to return later that there is some irresponsiblity there and some corrective action to take, she just isn't the only respondsible party.
  12. by   thisnurse
    nakita...i agree that the facility shares a part of the responsiblity. they did put the CNA in an unsafe environment. (you sound like a great manager by the way)
    but i think thats a seperate issue and is going to be decided like that.
    you have to ask...if there had been adequate staff , would her actions have been the same? something to consider would be whether she had bathed that pt before and stayed in the room with her the entire time.
    we can only speculate. this is going to be an interesting case.

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