Harrisonburg, Virginia (WHSV) – Several people have filed serious allegations of negligence against the Harrisonburg Health and Rehabilitation Center. Family members of residents there said residents were dealing with unsanitary conditions and abuse.
“I don’t care if you have an enemy don’t take them here. It’s horrible, I’m talking about a horrible thing. I hope they do something about it,” said Toi Sutherley, the daughter of an HHRC resident.
Suthelery said conditions inside the center are extremely worrying.
“Anyone can walk in there and see that there is a lot of neglect. Blood on the floor, drinks on the floor, dirty diapers on the floor where residents have thrown them because they are tired of sitting in their excrement. I saw it,” she said.
Candice Barnett’s mother was a resident of the facility from November to early April. She said the conditions are disgusting.
“You just go in, the amount of urine you smell and how lethargic people look, it’s horrific,” Barnett said. “See for yourself, look at the bathrooms, look at the leaky faucets and the ants crawling into cups. There are so many levels of neglect that we’ve seen and I’ve never seen so many corpses come out of there in my life.”
Barnett’s mother has aphasia and is blind and has been moved to a nursing home at home since leaving the center. She details how she saw her mother’s condition deteriorate in the few months he was there.
My mom lost 60 pounds in four weeks. I enter and her lips are peeling off. I’d have to call 3,4,5 times a day just to tell the assistants, tell the nurses to give her a drink of water,” she said.
Sutherley’s mother has been staying at the center for only a month, and she said there have been major problems from the start.
“I would go in, and she would sit in a stool for many hours, especially overnight, and there were times when she went in and didn’t feed,” she said.
Suthrie said the aides and nurses had consistently failed to change her mother’s diapers to the point that her entire bottom became raw and she developed a bed sore.
“They are keeping it there because of the bed sore because it is so big now and they are afraid she will develop either MRSA or sepsis. If that happens it could take her life,” she said.
Both concerned women contacted Adult Protective Services who say they have been looking into several cases of neglect at the center.
“The APS called me and wanted to tell me that it was discovered that they are ignoring my mother,” Suthree said.
Barnett said she constantly called her mother while she was at the center and that her mother’s best friend would spend hours there taking care of her, but that help was almost never available.
“There are a lot of people dying for what it is, obviously, but they are suffering and nobody needs to come out that way,” she said. “People who can’t help themselves, they don’t need to be there. If you have a family there get them out. That’s the basic message, get them out, they suffer.”
WHSV contacted Harrisonburg Health and Rehabilitation multiple times on Wednesday and Thursday for comment, but so far no official statement has been made regarding the allegations.
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