Alarm Fatigue may have Contributed to Deaths

Three workers at an extended-care nursing facility are facing charges after a patient died of what may have been neglect.

Three workers from a Uniondale nursing home were arrested Wednesday following allegations of neglect that led to the death of a patient.

According to the state attorney general, two nurses and a nurse’s aide at A. Holly Patterson Extended Care Facility in Uniondale neglected an 81-year-old patient who required a ventilator to breathe.

Prosecutors claim that 41-year-old Martine Moreland, 42-year-old Sijimole Reji, and 57-year-old Annieamma Augustine ignored the alarms of a ventilator, which led to the patient’s death.

The victim, who was not identified, died after ventilator alarms went unanswered for more than nine minutes. The patient required the ventilator to breathe, but somehow it became disconnected, sounding an alarm. By law, workers are required to respond to such an alarm.

Experts say a condition called “alarm fatigue” may be at play here. This conditions sometimes cause nurses and other health care workers to miss the sounds of alarms. Holly Patterson is a county-run facility and according to Nassau Legislator Carrie Solages, the charges are serious enough to warrant additional oversight.

No one from the facility would comment on the case, citing on-going litigation.

If you believe that yourself or a loved one has been the victim of abuse or neglect while staying in a nursing facility, you may be entitled to compensation. Let the attorneys at the law offices of Schenk Firm LLC fight for you. Call us today.