Although this shocking story did not take place in New Jersey, it is a worst-case scenario of the kind of nursing home negligence that can occur if residents and their families do not remain vigilant about the home's facilities and level of care.
A Gainesville, Fl., nursing home is under investigation after maggots were found in the eye socket of a 76-year-old resident. John Stumpp, who had previously lost an eye to cancer, went to the local Veterans Administration facility for an examination. During that checkup, the maggots were discovered.
The VA filed a report with the Adult Protective Services unit of the Florida Department of Children and Families (DCF), which has launched an investigation into the Gainesville Health Care Center. "We are very concerned about these disturbing allegations," said DCF spokesman John Harrell. "We are actively and thoroughly investigating to get to the bottom of what happened."
This is not the first time the nursing home has been called out for improper behavior. Following an unannounced Agency for Health Care Administration inspection in August, the home was cited for failing to notify a resident's doctor when the patient was uncooperative in allowing staff to follow the doctor's orders. The inspector also found a bottle of liquid bleach on a resident's dresser, and an elevator in need of repair.
Further, during the two years prior to November 2009, the nursing home received 39 citations from the AHCA for sanitary matters such as food storage, and for safety matters such as maintenance of sprinklers and ventilation.
Stumpp's daughter, Patrice Ripley, says she is outraged by her father's condition. "It's absolutely inexcusable. Quite frankly, I'm angry," she said. "I can't let this go for my dad, and I can't let anybody else be mistreated either."
Source: The Palm Beach Post, "Maggots found in eye socket of man in nursing home with Palm Beach County ties", Charles Elmore, 14 September 2010