MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Nurses at a St. Cloud nursing home made no effort to revive a resident who became ill and died last June, according to a state investigation released Wednesday.
When admitted to St. Benedict's Senior Community, the resident had declared that resuscitation efforts should be made in life-threatening situations.
The Minnesota Department of Health placed responsibility for the death with the facility because three nurses failed to give emergency medical care or start CPR on the resident, who died on June 29.
The nursing home has objected to the findings but did not appeal.
According to the report, two nurses who checked the resident's pulse were suspended on the day of the death and later fired. The supervisory nurse received retraining.
"We provide a lot of training to our staff," Christine Bakke, the nursing home's administrator, told the Star Tribune (http://strib.mn/1kzryIK) on Wednesday, explaining the objection to the report's finding that St. Benedict's was responsible. "We did everything we could do to prepare our staff for this situation."
According to the report, the resident of the short-stay unit began feeling dizzy and was unresponsive after walking to the dining room for lunch. Staff checked for and detected a pulse, then moved the resident back to the room. Upon checking again in the room, staff found no pulse.
At that moment, even though the resident's directive called for lifesaving measures, none were initiated and the resident died 10 minutes after first feeling dizzy.
A supervisory nurse was notified, and she said not to initiate CPR because "there was no witness to the resident's last breath (and) too much time had gone by," the report continued.
The nurses who checked for a pulse felt CPR should have been initiated, but they followed the order of the supervisory nurse. The physician for the case agreed CPR should have been started.
As is practice, the Health Department did not disclose the identities of the nursing home staff involved or the resident, who was at the home to recover from having a pacemaker implanted.
The report noted that the nursing home "objects to the allegations" but agreed to take several corrective measures without acknowledging wrongdoing.
The home has begun directing staff members to resuscitate all residents as their medical directives instruct. The facility is also carrying out drills for similar situations.
Information from: Star Tribune, http://www.startribune.com