Pair Of New York City Nursing Homes Sued for Inadequate Care & Staffing
Two New York City nursing homes have been sued for inadequate care and staffing. They are the target of class-action lawsuits filed by a former patient and a family member of another patient. The lawsuits claim that both facilities are severely short-staffed. The lawsuit asserts this chronic understaffing led to unsanitary conditions, infections, and other substandard practices.
Patient Forced to Change Own Bandages on Staph Infection
Sherard Clark is the main plaintiff and former resident at Bay Park Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation in Bronx. Mr. Clark claims an open wound on his foot developed a staph infection, yet he was not taken to a doctor. The nursing home was so understaffed, the lawsuit states, that Mr. Clark himself changed the bandages. He was also left unattended multiple times with an attached empty IV bag. When he tried to remove it, Mr. Clark fainted and struck his head.
Bay Park Center and the other nursing home named in the lawsuit, the Brooklyn-based Seagate Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, are for-profit facilities owned by SentosaCare, LLC. The class-action lawsuit names the facilities, owners, and Sentosa as defendants. Both nursing homes are consistently understaffed, which led to patients reporting “horrendous conditions” such as being left in their urine and waste.
Both Nursing Homes Had State Health Department Citations and Lowest Rating for Staff Levels
The pair of New York City nursing homes were called out for substandard care prior to the class-action lawsuit:
- Both Bay Park Center and Seagate received the lowest rating possible (one star) for staffing, according to the federal website Nursing Home Compare.
- The New York State Department of Health issued 23 citations to Bay Park Center over the past four years.
- The Seagate facility had 27 citations from the state Department of Health over the last four years.
A History of Neglect and Inadequate Care
Sentosa is the largest for-profit nursing home network in New York. It owns 25 facilities with 5,400 beds statewide despite repeated violations. In 2015, the company was scrutinized by the investigative journalism website ProPublica. The expose revealed several Sentosa facilities had the worst Medicare ratings for nurse staffing. The story also reported that seven unattended residents have left the grounds in past years. This neglect led to one resident freezing to death.
Plaintiffs Are Hopeful Lawsuit Leads to Sufficient Staffing
New York State does not have specific patient-to-staff ratios in nursing homes. In addition to seeking compensation, the lawsuit hopes to force increases in staffing to improve quality of care.