While I was providing care to someone, my unit nurse came looking for me to say one of my residents had made a huge mess and needed to be changed. I was in the middle of bathing a resident and took about 30-40 minutes to finish with them. When I went to the resident who made the mess, he was sitting in his wheelchair soiled with vomit, feces, and urine. There were bodily fluids on the floor as well. The nurse was aware I was busy and this resident sat in that condition for the time it took me to get to him. No one cleaned him up or atleast cleaned the floor. This resident could walk and risked falling due to the fluids on the floor. As I cleaned him, he said he was not feeling well. I informed the nurse, he was not feeling well and had what looked like blood in his vomit. The next day I noticed said reaident did not get out of bed nor eat any of his meals. He also had a putrid smell to his bowels. I informed the nurse of his condition. Also I informed her he may have an infection due to the familiarity of the smell from his bowels. I notified multiple individuals. Over the course of the day I checked on him and provided him with water. Another CNA and I informed the nurse again that this main was very ill and not being himself. Between 12:30p and 1p, lunch trays came out. I took my reaident his tray which he refused. I exited his room. There is a CNA whom he responds very well to and asked him if she would help me get him together after lunch. We are not allowed to provide care during meals. She repeatedly insisted I continue with lunch and she would clean him up. I oasses out trays, fed residents, and picked up trays. I begin my last rounds. I woeked from one end of the hall to the other. When I finally got to my last resident just to check on him, I found him deceased. The facility is now blaming me for his death saying I did not check on him any time during the day. The CNA who was to provide care never went back to his room, the unit nurse did go to my residents room at any time even after I and other CNAs informed her off his condition. The unit nurse never made documentation of what I and others reported to her. The night unit nurse never reported another CNAs concerns either. After he died the nurse came in and made a late documentation stating she took his vitals which she did not. This facility failed this man and he should have been sent out days prior due to his condition. I have multiple witnesses of this mans condition, the care I provided, and reports that CNAs made. Due to not documenting his care, the nurse lied and said she was never informed. Now the facility has moved to have my certification revoked and pinned a charge of neglect on me. They are trying to cover up the nurses neglect. I have witnesses but they are afraid to speak due to retaliation of the facility. These nurses never provided care nor documented our concerns. What can I do to protect myself and save my license. I did everything I could including informing the state. I have never had any disciplinary actions nor complaints taken out on me in the years I have done this. I am tired of facilities covering up their wrong doings and CNAs most times being blamed. I will not take blame nor be the scapegoat for the death of my resident. What can I do to protect myself and my license?

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You probably need to get a lawyer that specializes in this area. Have you also talked to Nursing Director to explain what happened & did you write everything down? How many patients did you have to take care of? Facilities are understaffed. I took my mother home..she was in a facility that I planned to keep her long term. Just one incident, for example…I asked Nurse at desk when & if my mother had shower since she’s there. They said the morning crew does it…asked in morning..they said night crew does it…after a week not getting an answer, I kept asking same question & was told by Nurse that I was a troublemaker because I asked if they could look it up in computer! Then they went about to do investigation…& made conclusion that my mother refused shower. Ok did she get a good bed /sponge bath instead?!? This is just one example. I was there daily. & I also hired my mother’s aide from home to go feed her breakfast & lunch. Since nobody had patience to sit with her to feed mother takes about 45 minutes to an hour to finish eating. Good luck in fighting this. It’s not your fault the facility doesn’t hire enough CNAs . Hugs 🤗
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Reply to CaregiverL

Agreed. 100%.

While this timeline is still very fresh in your mind, write down EVERYTHING you can remember and the times & people involved.

Then call a lawyer.

Sounds like they are trying to cover their rear ends by dumping 100% of his care on you.

Sounds like he was near death when you were caring for him--so I doubt they could make 'it's all her fault' an issue. There are supposed to be many eyes on each patient. There's plenty of blame to go around.
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Reply to Midkid58

I agree with the advice of all here. You should do full documentation whenever you return home from shift. A diary without tear outs, complete with times, names and dates and no erasures, only cross out of mistakes is gold in any court action. Keep it meticulously. I once was questioned about a case of a man who had bowel surgery and infection as to whether I had administered enemas to clear the night before, and was questioned YEARS after the case. I could both look this up and see that I had, and had made thorough nurse's notes in the records, could say that "It is in my diary and if I charted it I can swear to it in court" ....would have taken a lie detector test to that effect. It is important for all caring for others to have a complete record.
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Reply to AlvaDeer

You need a lawyer who specializes for the employee STAT. Your job description is beyond the scope of practice for this patient. You might want to file your own report to the state depth of health. I wished you had an opportunity to chart like the staff.
I had that ability and during my career, I was approached about being ready to testify at court cases due to my description of symptoms out of my scope of practice
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Reply to MACinCT

Before you see the lawyer, write this all out fully, with dates, times, names and job titles of all the people you notified, plus what you were doing hour by hour during the day or so that matters. This will save a lot of time and money for you with the lawyer. Include the details of the witnesses who you say are afraid to speak up, including the details of when they were involved. Is it unfortunate that you will have to name people who you would prefer to keep out of it, but that’s the way these things go.

Your post suggest that this has happened before to your knowledge, and you are “tired of facilities covering up their wrong doings and CNAs most times being blamed”. In your notes, provide details of this as well, particularly if it has happened in this facility.

A competent lawyer, faced with this, will counter-claim for damages for defamation against those at fault. They will also make a complaint to the appropriate authorities. If the evidence is detailed and convincing, the proceedings against you and your license are quite likely to be dropped. If not dropped, they are not likely to be upheld.

If there are any more interactions, write notes immediately afterwards. Written notes written very promptly have a special status in the law.

It might also be good idea to look for another job. You may not be on good terms with the manager by the time this is over. However don’t burn bridges unnecessarily. Faced with details, it may all fizzle out.

Yours, Margaret
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Reply to MargaretMcKen

Get a lawyer!
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Reply to Isthisrealyreal

Get a lawyer who specializes in labor law.
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Reply to vegaslady

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