Employee terminated after abusing developmentally disabled patientsby Nathaniel Minor, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — An employee at a Rochester area care facility has been terminated after allegations of abuse of three patients were substantiated by a Minnesota Department of Health investigation.
The employee abused three clients on May 8, 2009 at Riverview Services, Inc. of Wanamingo, Minn, according to a document released Wednesday. The investigation confirmed several instances where the employee abused three clients.
In one case, the employee became angry at a 23-year-old client and pushed her, resulting in the client hitting her head on a wall.
In another case, the employee was helping an elderly resident stand up when her foot got caught, and the employee kicked the client's foot to get it to move, which caused the client to scream and cry.
In the third instance, the employee became upset with another client and pushed her wheelchair with such force that it traveled through the dining room, approximately 16 feet, and struck a recliner.
The incidents did not result in any physical injuries, the report said. In an interview contained in the report, the terminated employee denied abusing any of the clients, but stated that two other employees made up the allegations to get her terminated.
Interviews with employees who witnessed the abuse said the terminated employee was "short-tempered with the clients and has a history of being rude with them."
An employee who worked with the terminated employee during the day of the incidents said she was "nice and funny", but had concerns after the terminated employee completed her rounds too quickly. Upon checking on her work, the employee found that the terminated employee had not properly finished her tasks.
About two weeks before the incident, the terminated employee had a meeting with her supervisor regarding similar performance problems.
The Department of Health also issued three federal deficiencies to Riverview Services, in part because of its failure to report the abuse incidents to the department in a timely fashion.