In Florida, three state agencies and the Miami-Dade police are investigating the cause of burn injuries sustained by a disabled foster child at the Florida Club Care Center. The 12-year-old girl, who is a resident at the nursing home, suffers from severe cerebral palsy and is unable to communicate. She sustained second-degree burn injuries on her thigh and hand.
The Child Protection Team, which is comprised of doctors and nurses that determine whether a child has been the victim of abuse, identified the girl’s burn injuries. In a letter to Florida Governor Charlie Christ, Doctor Michael Strong accused an Agency for Health Care Administration investigator of botching the probe into the girl’s injuries, in part due to the administrator’s “lack of due diligence.” The AHCA, which is in charge of overseeing hospitals and nursing homes, says its investigator found no evidence to indicate that the young girl had been burned.
Strong said the Child Protection Team was worried that the safety of other residents at the nursing home were at risk. He believes that the girl was the victim of neglect.
The Department of Children and Families (DCF) has agreed to increase the number of visits to children at the Florida nursing home until Dr. Strong’s worries are addressed. The Florida Club Care Center has also agreed to have a “monitor” at the children’s nursing area every day until any problems are resolved.
DCF local administrator Alan Abramowitz says that workers think the girl was neglected but not abused on purpose. Previous to this incident, the North Miami Beach nursing home has been investigated for eight reports of neglect or abuse, including allegations of medical neglect, inadequate supervision, and physical injury. The Florida Club Care Center has been investigated for 66 reports of abuse or neglect involving adult residents. Only four of the incidents were verified.
Nursing Home Negligence
If the negligent or abusive acts of a doctor, nurse, or another worker at a Florida nursing home are the cause of a resident’s injuries, the victim and his or her family may be entitled to compensation for nursing home abuse and negligence.
Three agencies probe child’s burns, Miami-Herald, October 3, 2008
Burn Degrees, Lifespan.org
Related Web Resources:
Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Center
Child Protection Team
Florida Agency for Health Care Administration