Nursing Home Malpractice Continues to Violate Veterans’ Rights in New Jersey State-Run Veteran Homes

The poor care and incidence of nursing home malpractice that allowed two New Jersey veterans homes to fall victim to widespread COVID-19 outbreaks early in the pandemic have not been remedied, say federal investigators.

A recent Department of Justice investigation has revealed that hygiene and infection control violations continue to persist in two New Jersey veterans nursing homes where COVID-19 was permitted to run rampant early in 2020, says a CNN article. The Paramus and Menlo Park Veterans Memorial Homes logged the highest and fourth-highest number of nursing home resident deaths from COVID-19 in the state by October of 2020, prompting a federal investigation. Inspectors in 2020 found evidence of nursing home malpractice that was determined to have directly promoted the deadly spread of the coronavirus in the homes. According to the CNN article, the newly-released DOJ report finds that these deficiencies are ongoing.

The 2020 DOJ investigation found that Paramus and Menlo Park staff failed in such basic COVID-19 protocols as proper hand washing, disinfection of common areas and bedrooms, and the isolation of residents sick with Covid. Menlo Park was in particular reported to have filthy nursing stations and insect infestations.

The new investigation says that the homes continue to violate veteran residents’ right to reasonable care and safety (as guaranteed by the 14th Amendment) through the following ongoing instances of nursing home malpractice:

  • Neglecting to properly train staff: Nursing home residents have the right to expect proper care from staff; untrained workers constitute nursing home malpractice.
  • Failure to comply with basic COVID-19 infection control protocols (e.g. testing, contact tracing, isolation of infected residents): Not following protocols to prevent or contain the spread of infections puts highly vulnerable residents at risk of becoming deathly ill, a clear example of nursing home malpractice.
  • Failure to implement wound prevention procedures: Protocols exist to prevent the development of wounds like pressure ulcers. Not following proper prevention procedures puts residents at risk for developing pressure wounds, which is a common incidence of nursing home malpractice.
  • Neglecting proper wound care: Wounds like bedsores, if left to deteriorate, can lead to serious infections, sepsis, and even death, likely requiring the services of a wrongful death attorney.
  • Failure to implementing policies to prevent or respond to nursing home falls: Nursing home falls are frequently preventable, and not employing policies to prevent falls equals nursing home malpractice; furthermore, falls are a leading cause of nursing home deaths, which may require the involvement of a wrongful death attorney.

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy called the report is “a deeply disturbing reminder that the treatment received by our heroic veterans is unacceptable and, quite frankly, appalling.”

Holding Homes Responsible for Nursing Home Malpractice

Brian P. Murphy, an experienced nursing home malpractice and wrongful death attorney, has dedicated his personal injury practice to protecting Philadelphia/PA and NJ nursing home residents from neglect and elder abuse. Vulnerable elderly residents of Philadelphia/PA or NJ nursing homes should not have to live in fear of being subjected to abuse or neglect or any type of nursing home malpractice. Brian Murphy takes on Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, and New Jersey nursing homes for egregious acts of elder abuse, especially any incidence of nursing home malpractice that causes wrongful death. Attorney Brian Murphy is ready to discuss your legal options. If you or your loved one needs to contact a nursing home malpractice and wrongful death attorney, call Brian Murphy today.