Nursing Home to Close Amid Allegations of Failing to Report Abuse

By Christie Duffy

Residents at a 139-bed nursing home have been told to move out. Citing deficiencies, the Federal Health Department imposed a $50,000 fine and has moved to terminate all Medicare and Medicaid payments to Gloucester Manor.

Sheri Ammons is heading out today to hunt for a new home for her mother, who says residents inside are distraught.

“They don’t know where they’re going. A lot of them don’t have any idea where they are going,” said resident Marie Matese.

Gloucester manor is the only facility in the state on the Centers for Medicare and Medicade services national list for nursing homes with serious quality issues.

“I call for a nurse and they come when they feel like it or they don’t show up and all and you ring the buzzer again,” said Matese.

According to inspection documents, Gloucester Manor failed to report abuse of residents. The documents detail an alleged incident where a “cognitively impaired resident” was “slapped in the face by a certified nursing assistant.” The documents also say that another nurse witnessed it, — “she had witnessed the CNA hit the resident” — but the facility never reported it to the authorities.

“It is mandatory under state law that if a worker of a long term care setting has a reasonable suspicion that abuse or neglect or exploitation took place, they must by law report that,” Ombudsman James McCracken said.

Inspection documents also indicate the staff failed to assist residents in need of help eating, drinking and taking care of themselves.

In one case, “The facility failed to aggressively provide additional interventions when the resident continued to lose weight — an estimated 42 pounds, a 22 percent loss of total body weight, in four months,” according to the documents.

The state Department of Health says in all, Gloucester Manor has been cited for over 50 deficiencies in the past two years.

Sheri Ammons is worried about where she’ll take her mother.

“There are 130 patients in here that they have to find homes for. There is like a two year wait, a six month wait,” said Ammons.

Our calls to the Gloucester Manor’s parent company, Gericare, were not returned.

In a letter sent to residents’ families, the Nursing Home Administrator Anita M. Gels wrote: “Please know that we did not want this outcome to a situation. We have worked very, very hard on in the last six months to improve.”

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid services says they sent a letter that arrived here this week, and in it, it states that Gloucester Manor waived their rights to an appeal. Their fine has been reduced to about $30,000, which is due by Aug. 1. And residents have until that date to move out.