Substantiated Complaint Against Augustana Emerald Crest After Death of Client

Written By: Kenneth LaBore | Published On: 1st February 2017
Allegations of Neglect of Supervision at Augustana Emerald Crest in Shakopee

Allegations of Neglect of Supervision at Augustana Emerald Crest in Shakopee

Augustana Emerald Crest Allegations of Neglect

In a report dated, January 3, 2017 by the Minnesota Department of Health alleging that Augustana Emerald Crest in Shakopee, it is alleged that a client was neglected when staff failed to provide adequate supervision and s/he ingested dishwasher detergent.  The client was hospitalized.

There is another report with similar facts also dated January 3, 2017.

Augustana Emerald Crest Substantiated Neglect Allegation

Based on a preponderance of the evidence, neglect of supervision occurred when a staff member left a corrosive chemical detergent unattended and within the client’s reach.  The client drank some of the chemical and sustained burns to the throat, requiring hospitalization.  The client subsequently died from complications of ingestion.

The client had a history of dementia and was noted to have deficits in cognition, with poor judgment and decision-making.  S/he also had the tendency to take food and drinks from the kitchen.  The client’s cognitive assessment noted that cupboards needed to be locked due to this behavior.

Staff interviews and documentation review indicated that, on the day of the incident, the client was in the dining area next to the kitchen waiting for breakfast.  A facility staff member was changing and replacing an almost empty dishwasher container of UltraKlene in the kitchen.  The staff member left the detergent out on the counter.  The client grabbed the cleaning solution, poured a glass and proceeded to take a sip as witnessed by another client.  The client spit out the liquid, but then proceeded to drink a quarter cup of coffee.  Approximately three hours later, the client began complaining of a sore throat and had continued to spit out phlegm, which contained blood.  S/he was noted to have a swollen upper lip with a raspy voice.  The registered nurse assessed the client and it was noted that the client’s throat felt swollen.  Emergency services was called.  Staff reported they were not aware of the ingestion until this point.

The client was hospitalized for 13 days, was diagnosed with aspiration pneumonia and severe dysphagia (difficulty swallowing).  The client was not able to eat or drink to sustain life, and died.  The death certificate indicated the client died from complications of sodium hydroxide detergent ingestion.

According to information from the manufacturer, the detergent UltraKlene contains sodium hydroxide and is corrosive in nature, causes respiratory tract irritation, and is harmful if swallowed.  If ingested, it causes burns to the mouth, throat and stomach.

For more information about how to get accountability for elder abuse and neglect related injuries call Kenneth LaBore for a free consultation at his direct number at 612-743-9048 or toll free at 1-888-452-6589 or by email at KLaBore@MNnursinghomeneglect.com.  There is no fee unless a there is a verdict or settlement offer from the wrongdoer.

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