Video evidence from the Veterans Victory House in Walterboro, South Carolina, shows an extended altercation between two residents while nursing home staff looked on.
The nursing home’s report claimed that a resident swung at another resident during mealtime and simultaneously threw lukewarm coffee at the same resident. The facility’s report also said that a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) removed the attacking resident’s utensil when they intervened. When the surveyor reviewed this account, they asked to see the video of the incident, which revealed a very different story.
In the video, the residents are seated next to each other. One resident receives their food while the first is already eating. The second resident places their juice glass on the other resident’s tray, but the first resident continues eating. The second resident then takes the other resident’s coffee cup and spills its contents all over the other resident’s plate of food.
This video did not include audio, but it is obvious the first resident says something to the other resident after having coffee poured all over their meal. The second resident responds violently, taking a utensil and stabbing the first resident’s arm.
The first resident picks up their coffee mug and lifts it, while the second resident holds the first resident’s arms up. All this happened before nursing home staff intervened.
Finally, a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) moves between the two residents but is noted to be eating. The CNA collects the coffee-soaked tray and walks away to the other side of the dining room, leaving the attacking resident’s utensil. Both residents were left unattended.
The second resident takes this opportunity to grab their coffee cup as if they are taking a drink and throws coffee onto the other resident.
Both residents were known to instigate disruption—the first resident was assigned one-on-one attention during mealtimes because they would mess with other residents’ space and touch their trays. The second resident was known to be controlling and reactive, telling other residents where to sit during meals and believing that the nursing facility was “their building.”
As with many nursing home abuse and neglect cases, residents get hurt when nursing staff ignore care plans. The resident who was attacked with coffee and an eating utensil was supposed to be protected by a staff member during meals. However, the staff in the dining room was caught off guard with a confrontation that seemed very sudden because they were eating their own meals and not paying attention.
If the staff had followed the prepared care plan, both residents would have likely avoided confrontation.
Even more disturbing than the scene of a resident attacking another resident is the fact that the nursing home tried to change the facts to protect themselves. Video evidence made it clear that staff should have intervened sooner, but the facility’s report claimed that there was nothing wrong.
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