Monday, November 27, 2006

Heroic Aide Fired

"Nurse aide fired for alerting patient's family of poor care" (Des Moines Register).

Let's review.

A certified nurse aide reported to a nurse at Ravenwood Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Waterloo, IA that an 89-year-old resident was complaining of pain, dizziness and cramps and asked the nurse to check on her.

Nothing happened.

The next night the resident appeared even more ill and was vomiting and still hadn't been seen by a nurse. The aide was alarmed. She called the resident's daughter who then asked to speak to the nurse on duty, and requested they get her mother to a hospital.

THE NURSE REFUSED! ...only after a legal threat did the nurse comply.

The resident was diagnosed with a life-threatening condition that resulted in surgery the next day, and was also diagnosed with pneumonia, dehydration and a urinary tract infection.

The aide undoubtedly saved the resident's life. Was she rewarded? No.

The aide was fired. And denied unemployment benefits because, the judge ruled that the aide had not acted in the COMPANY'S best interests.

What an outrage. Corporate policy overruling resident well-being. Are there no government regulations that say the care of the resident is paramount? Anything less is condoning abuse and euthanasia.

The agency reviewing this nursing home incident, the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals, is itself in need of a review, immediately. That's where someone should be fired.

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