Choking Death, Fractures Cited In Nursing Home Reports


By Lisa Chedekel
CT Health Investigation Team
Seven nursing homes have been cited by the state Department of Public Health for lapses in care, including an incident at a facility in Southbury in which a resident choked to death.
The incident, according to information posted at CT Health Investigation Team, at the Lutheran Home of Southbury occurred in April, when a resident who was supposed to be served a “soft diet” of ground meat and liquids was instead served a meal of ham, cooked carrots and a cookie. According to a state inspection report, a nurse’s aide had cut up the ham for the resident to eat, even though a dietary order slip on the resident’s meal tray instructed a soft diet.
After the resident began choking, staff members attempted the Heimlich maneuver, without success. State inspectors said the nursing home lacked an adequate process to alert personnel to a medical emergency—something the nursing home has since corrected, the state report says.
The Lutheran Home was fined $615.
Also fined for poor patient care was Sheriden Woods Health Care Center of Bristol, which was cited for five violations, including one incident in which a resident fell while being moved and suffered a neck fracture. In another incident, a resident was given his or her roommate’s medications in error. The home also was cited in connection with five residents testing positive in May for salmonella infection. The home faces $955 in fines.
The other citations were:

  • Bridgeport Manor, of Bridgeport, faces a $650 fine after a resident with a traumatic brain injury hit the side of his or her head on a headboard, sustaining a laceration. The resident had been moved by one nurse’s aide instead of the two staff members who were required as part of the patient’s care plan.
  • Regency Heights of Danielson faces a $580 fine after a resident whose feet were not properly secured in his or her wheelchair suffered a hip fracture.
  • Candlewood Valley Health & Rehabilitation Center of New Milford was fined $510 for improper care of a resident with mobility problems who fell off a shower chair and suffered a hip fracture.
  • Regency Heights of Norwich was fined $510 for failing to properly monitor and treat a resident’s hand wound.
  • Pomperaug Woods Health Center of Southbury faces a $510 fine for an incident in which a resident at risk of falling fell off a toilet while unattended and sustained a broken ankle.