Alzheimer’s Care Center Under Scrutiny

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An Alzheimer’s care center in Rogers is under scrutiny after allegations of malpractice and lack of quality care for its residents.
 
The Arkansas Department of Human Services surveyed Magnolia Place Alzheimer’s Special Care Center in late January after two outside complaints were made against it in 2018. 

The survey found the care center is not only making poor medical decisions but also putting its residents in harm’s way and it’s not only the state that claims to have witnessed these discrepancies. 

A former employee who prefers to be referred to as “Julie” to protect her identity. Julie said Magnolia Place Alzheimer’s Special Care Center is facing many issues.

“They are acting outside of their scope of practice. There have been people who have moved their loved ones out due to the staffing, because of the lack of care and accountability,” Julie said. 

Julie said she witnessed other workers bringing children to work, medication errors, medical staff who weren’t qualified, and several deaths that occurred were out of the ordinary. 

“There’s really no accountability for making sure each person gets their medication, there’s no accountability at all. There are also staff that are not qualified, they have not gone through caregiver training,” Julie said.

According to Arkansas regulation for an Alzheimer’s Special Care Unit, caregivers must complete 30 hours of initial training followed by eight hours of in-service training annually.

“There have been several falls with major injured there because of the lack of staff. As their health declines it’s not being caught quick enough, so by the time they get to the hospital the patient passes away,” Julie said.

We attempted to speak with Administrators at Magnolia Place, but they declined to go on camera and instead released this statement:

“At Magnolia Place, our mission is to provide quality care to and enrich the lives of those living with memory loss. We pride ourselves on making our residents’ safety and care our number one priority.  We were disappointed to learn that someone has called into question our commitment to our residents and the care that we provide to them.  Although we have been provided with little detail regarding these reports, we take them seriously.  We have reviewed them and believe them to be unfounded. Magnolia Place remains committed to providing a safe living environment for and high-quality care to our residents, and ensuring compliance with all applicable regulations and standards of care,” said Administrator Andrea Kintner.

“They don’t want staff talking to family members about what’s going on or what’s isn’t going on,” Julie said. 

Two complaints were filed with DHS against Magnolia Place in late 2018 — but were deemed unsubstantiated. The DHS then surveyed the facility in January and found several discrepancies such as many employees not having job descriptions, kitchen staff without proper facial hair covering, and housing residents that require a higher level of care than Magnolia Place can provide. 

“All of those things all affect our residents, everything that goes on in that building, these residents that’s their home that’s where they live. They pay a lot of money to live there and they deserve the care,” Julie said.

The Arkansas Department of Human Services said Alzheimer Care Units are required to keep annual health surveys accessible and available when requested by the public.

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