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Connie’s mother had been in and out of nursing homes for the past 13 years. When her mother had a bad experience with one nursing home, Connie would move her to another home thinking she would get different results. Her mother started having epileptic seizures as a young child, and she was diagnosed  with dementia in 2009. In 2012, Connie moved her mother back  home to Monroe, Louisiana from Dallas, Texas and tried to take  care of her herself. It is hard enough for one person to live off a  fixed income, but it is even harder to manage with two people.  It was not easy to do alone, so in 2013 she did the only thing  that she thought was best for her mother. She decided to put her  back into a nursing home, Ouachita Healthcare and Rehab. She  did not expect that facility to be perfect, but they should be held accountable when their patients and residents are being mistreated. For example, when dirty clothes are not being washed, patient’s dishes are not being cleaned up, and the patient’s bed  sheets are not being changed. There were several times where  Connie’s mother was not being changed in a timely manner. On  one occasion, Connie’s mother was wet to the point to where  it had soaked through her clothes. Connie started complaining  after she noticed that her mother’s clothes were piling up and  not being taken to the laundry to be washed. But no matter how  much she complained the problem never got resolved. She spoke  to everyone from the administrator, Director of Nursing D.O.N,  and even the Assistant Director of Nursing A. D.O.N. When that  did not work, she reached out to the Ombudsman on duty to try  to get the problem resolved. After that, meeting things seemed  to get better and Connie decided to move back to Dallas. A short time later Connie decided to go visit her mother and  while there, she found a coffee cup sitting on the bookshelf with  molded coffee in it. She found dirty diapers mixed in with her  mother’s dirty clothes, and she has even found a dirty diaper on  the top of the bathroom sink. Connie’s mother was in a wheel chair and could not walk or get up without assistance, so she  knew that her mother was not the one leaving the dirty diapers  everywhere. Connie had threatened to go public with the way  her mother was being treated hoping that would spark a change  and that her mother would be better taken care of. Well, in November of 2018 Connie went home to Monroe for the Thanksgiving holiday and took her mother out of the nursing home  for a few days so they could spend Thanksgiving together. A  week prior to that, Connie received a phone call from one of  her mother’s nurses informing her that they noticed her mother  had a bruise on her left leg. When Connie looked at her mother’s left leg and saw that it was covered with bruises, some of  them new and some of them old. She asked the staff at the nursing home about the bruises, no one could give her a solid answer. She was given many excuses of why her mother’s leg had  been covered in bruises. One excuse being that it was her blood  thinning medication causing the bruises. After Connie complained about the hygiene of her mother and the bruises on her  mother’s leg, a family member advised her to stop complaining  so much before something even worse happened. Connie’s last  resort was to move back to Monroe, take her mother out of that  nursing home, and try to take care of her the best way she knew  how. So, on December 17, 2018 she did just that. Shortly after  on December 23 her mother had a seizure and had to be hospitalized. While in the hospital, the doctors caring for Connie’s  mother wanted to know why she was on so much medication.  They even questioned some of the medications that her mother  was on. Her mother was over-medicated, and this caused her to  sleep a lot due to the conflicting medications the nursing home  had her taking. Connie’s mother stayed in the hospital for a total  of 8 days in order to flush all the medications from her system.  Connie worked in a nursing home for almost two years in  Mesquite, Texas as a patient driver. She saw first-hand how  some of the patients and residents were being treated. She said  she’s learned a few things over the years with her mother being  in and out of nursing homes. She said if you have someone in  a nursing home, you have the right to request a copy of the  medication that they are taking. You should request that list at  least once a month. Make sure that the medication list matches  what they are telling you that they are taking. If you do not  understand what the medications are and what they do please google them, call to speak to a pharmacist, or go in person to your local pharmacy to find out. Make sure that you go visit as often as you can, and never go visit at the same time each visit. Make sure one of the days you go visit falls on a weekend. Do as much research as you can on the nursing  home by going on their website and reading the comments  and reviews. If you go to the courthouse in the city where  the nursing home is you can see if the nursing home has  been sued, how many times they have been sued, and the  reasons they have been sued. A lot of times nursing homes  will settle out of court to keep people quiet, and they will  ask the judge to place a gag order so that you cannot talk about what happened. You have the right to document if you see something out of place or mistreatment of the patients. Documentation includes photographs, videos, or contracts that have been signed by  both parties. Otherwise, without the documentation, it will  be your word against theirs, and while you are fighting this  battle, alone the nursing home staff and their management  will stick together. You are able record conversations if the conversation is about you or the person in interest. Make  sure that while you are recording you put date and time  stamps on everything. People put their loved ones in nursing homes and assisted  living facilities because they trust that their loved ones will  be taken care of by trained, certified, and professional individuals. Connie is not saying that everyone who works in  nursing homes are bad or that they mistreat people, because  there are some good ones out there. This issue is something  Connie has wanted to address and go public with for a long time now, but she was fearful of what would happen to her  mother if she did. Connie’s mother passed away April 15, 2020. Connie says she does not have to worry about anyone  taking his or her anger out on her due to her speaking out. 



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