A video has surfaced from 2014 that shows nurses in the Northeast Atlanta Health and Rehabilitation Center laughing as a World War II veteran calls for help numerous times before being left to die. The hidden video was uncovered by the family of James Dempsey, 89, of Woodstock, Ga and shows the well-respected veteran calling for help several times because he was unable to breathe. Instead of the nurses jumping into action and doing everything they could to save Dempsey, the video shows them laughing as they half-heartedly try to start an oxygen machine and provide assistance.
Following Dempsey’s death in 2014, his family sued the nursing home and settled out of court. While attorneys at the nursing home tried to stop the video from being shown by local media news outlet, a county judge said the news station had permission to unseal the video. According to a report taken after Dempsey’s death, the nurses claim to have rushed to Dempsey’s room when they realized he could not breathe. Nursing supervision Wanda Nuckles says she performed CPR until paramedics arrived. However, the nurses did not realize there was a secret camera setup that captured the entire incident. Not only did no one rush to Dempsey’s aid, but the video shows that no one was administering CPR prior to Nuckles’ arrival, and she did not jump in to help right away. In the video, Nuckles and the other nurses are seen laughing, quite the opposite of helping a patient in need.
In 2015 the nursing home was made aware of the video, but did not let any of the involved nurses go until almost a year later. Nuckles and one other nurse did not give up their nursing licenses until September of 2017. This devastating case is a very real example of the nursing home abuse that we see taking place all over the country. The elderly are constantly being taken advantage of by individuals entrusted with their care, as we see in Mr. Dempsey’s case. While the nursing home where Dempsey was has received the lowest overall rating possible, it is still open for operation.
How to Spot Nursing Home Abuse
It is imperative that loved ones understand how to spot the signs of nursing home abuse. In many cases, elderly individuals cannot stand up for themselves or determine when they are being taken advantage of. While people admit their senior loved ones to nursing homes and other assisted living facilities because they believe this is where they will receive the highest quality of care, this is oftentimes not the case. With that in mind, let’s go over a few ways you can spot nursing home abuse and keep your loved one safe from neglect:
- Bed injuries
- Unexplained falls, fractures, or head injuries
- Emotionally upset or agitated
- Extremely withdrawn
- Bed sores
- Reluctance to speak when a staff member is present
- Change in personality when a staff member is present
- Rapid weight loss or weight gain
- Signs of malnutrition
- Unexplained injuries
- Unexplained or unexpected death of another resident
If you suspect your loved one is the victim of nursing home abuse or neglect, please call Wormington & Bollinger today.