Tuesday, October 25, 2016

-Asked how the alleged killings went undetected for so long, Premier Kathleen Wynne said it would be inappropriate for her to comment on an ongoing investigation, but that it was an “extremely distressing and tragic, tragic thing for all of the families involved.” Sabrina Sabic, who worked as a student nurse’s aid at the Woodstock nursing home, stood near the facility with friends shortly after news of Wettlaufer’s arrest broke. “It’s shocking and sad to know that this happened to so many people, and it just seems with my experience there that people working there should have paid closer attention,” the 17-year-old said.-------------Elizabeth “Bethe” Tracey Mae Wettlaufer, 49, who worked at nursing homes in Woodstock and London, Ont., was charged on Tuesday with the first-degree murders of eight residents aged 75 to 96-------The Canadian Association of Retired Persons (CARP) said in a statement that it was shocked by the alleged serial killings. “The age of the victims and their medical condition should play no part in how our justice system pursues those who violate the laws of our land and cause harm to another,” said CARP policy director and general counsel Wade Poziomka.---- Julie Ali 3 mins · Commenting for Montreal Gazette · The lack of oversight of continuing care facilities makes such scenarios understandable. If you have no one doing audits in a way that problems are detected as was the case of my handicapped sister's situation, and you believe the government is doing the job required well then you don't suspect that residents are dying with death by nurse. It's a sad situation. In my handicapped sister's situation she would have died because the entire system blamed her as being non-compliant. If I had not gone into the nursing home and ensured her compliance nothing would have been done. Despite being with her to ensure compliance she was still taken to hospital. The data card downloads revealed why. The BIPAP machine was not being put on. It's important for families to have a surveillance system to check the staff and the care provider. In this case, no sort of surveillance would have detected the problem other than government autopsy work. How did the RCMP find out about this case? We usually don't get autopsy work on residents at nursing homes for the most part. They seem to be considered at the end game for the most part. Perhaps the higher than normal mortality rate on this nurse's shift raised concerns and that might have caused the administrators to ask for an investigation. But for the most part it is everyone covers their butt and the residents suffer abuse.


Ontario nurse accused of killing eight elderly nursing home patients over period of seven years

HEATHER RIVERS AND JENNIFER VANDERMEER, POSTMEDIA NEWS  
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WOODSTOCK, Ont. — An Ontario nurse who once wrote a poem describing the “sharp thirst” of a serial killer has been charged with murdering eight elderly patients in her care.
Elizabeth “Bethe” Tracey Mae Wettlaufer, 49, who worked at nursing homes in Woodstock and London, Ont., was charged on Tuesday with the first-degree murders of eight residents aged 75 to 96.
The deaths took place between August 2007 and August 2014.
Seven of the alleged victims lived at Caressant Care Woodstock, a long-term care residence that is across the street from where eight-year-old murder victim Tori Stafford was abducted in April 2009. Her disappearance and murder captured national attention and left the city of roughly 37,000 people grappling with fear and grief.
The eighth alleged victim was a resident of a long-term care residence, Meadow Park, in London.
“The victims were administered a drug, but I’m not in a position at this time to comment on specifics of the drug,” said London Police Det.- Supt. William Merrylees.
Police said they believe Wettlaufer, who appeared in court Tuesday and was remanded into custody, also worked at other long-term care facilities.
They did not rule out the possibility of more victims but would not comment on the motive of the alleged serial killer.
Police said the investigation began Sept. 29 when information was received from an undisclosed source that eight people had been murdered over a period of several years.
A conflicting picture of Wettlaufer emerged Tuesday from interviews with friends and neighbours, court records and her social media posts.
“She just seemed like a single lady, going in and out with her dog and nothing seemed out of the ordinary,” said Shawna Fraser, who lives three doors down from Wettlaufer in a Woodstock apartment building.
But neighbours said rumours about Wettlaufer began circulating recently. She also was made the subject of a peace bond earlier this month with one of the conditions banning her from possessing insulin or any other medication unless it was for her own use.
She was also barred by the court order from visiting any long-term care facility, nursing or retirement home, or hospital unless she needed medical treatment.
A Facebook page for a Bethe Wettlaufer, whose photo, education and employment records match that of Elizabeth Wettlaufer, makes reference to what appears to be a struggle with substance abuse.
“My own voice called to me in the darkness. Others hands lifted me when I chose the light. One year ago today I woke up not dead. 365 days clean and sober,” says a post from September 2015.
On her Facebook page, Wettlaufer listed a Brantford, Ont., homecare agency, Lifeguard Homecare, as an employer.
Records from the College of Nurses of Ontario show she was first registered as a nurse in August 1995 but resigned on Sept. 30 of this year.
A LinkedIn profile for someone of the same name also showed a bachelor’s degree in counselling from the London Baptist Bible College.
Before she worked at Caressant Care, Wettlaufer worked at Christian Horizons, a faith-based charitable organization that works with people with developmental disabilities.
The organization said Wettlaufer left in June 2007.
Charlene Puffer, who lives down the hall from Wettlaufer’s fifth-floor apartment, described her neighbour as a decent person.
Puffer said Wettlaufer told her she liked her job as a nurse.
Another apartment resident who considered Wettlaufer a friend, Nancy Gilbert, said the nurse recently told her she had just gotten out of rehab, for the second time.
The Canadian Association of Retired Persons (CARP) said in a statement that it was shocked by the alleged serial killings.
“The age of the victims and their medical condition should play no part in how our justice system pursues those who violate the laws of our land and cause harm to another,” said CARP policy director and general counsel Wade Poziomka.
Families of residents said they shocked and saddened by the news of the murder charges against Wettlaufer.
“It’s devastating,” said Arpad Horvath, whose father, also named Arpad Horvath, is one of the residents Wettlaufer is accused of killing.
“To lose somebody like that. It’s sad. You figure he died, and that was it. The next thing you know, you find out (police believe) somebody murdered your father.”
Daniel Silcox of Pontypool said he found out about his father being among the residents Wettlaufer is accused of killing while listening to the radio Tuesday morning.
“We’re living my father’s death right now,” Silcox said. “It’s horrific.”
Silcox said police had told his sisters about an investigation and briefly interviewed one of them, but the family had no idea what it was about.
His father didn’t like living at the home, had broken his hip at the facility, but the family otherwise had no suspicions that his death might have been a murder, Silcox said.
“We don’t want him to become the poster boy of this tragedy but we would like the story out there: (He was) a wonderful man, a (Second World War) vet, just the best father in the world.”
Police didn’t rule out the possibility there might be more nursing home residents whose deaths are suspicious, but wouldn’t comment on a possible motive.
“Our hope is (the family) will find some comfort charges have been laid,” OPP Det. Supt. Dave Truax said.
News of the arrest quickly spread to the Ontario legislature, where members observed a moment of silence shortly before noon.
Asked how the alleged killings went undetected for so long, Premier Kathleen Wynne said it would be inappropriate for her to comment on an ongoing investigation, but that it was an “extremely distressing and tragic, tragic thing for all of the families involved.”
Sabrina Sabic, who worked as a student nurse’s aid at the Woodstock nursing home, stood near the facility with friends shortly after news of Wettlaufer’s arrest broke.
“It’s shocking and sad to know that this happened to so many people, and it just seems with my experience there that people working there should have paid closer attention,” the 17-year-old said.
Her mother, Indira Sabic, who lives across the street from the nursing home, said she’s happy her daughter no longer works there.
“It’s also so close to where Tori was taken,” Sabic said. “It’s another sad day in the neighbourhood.”
Woodstock Police Chief William Renton noted that the case might stir up distressing memories of Tori Stafford’s murder, especially since one of her killers, Michael Rafferty, had an appeal of the verdict in his trial turned down only on Monday.
“It’s very difficult for a community to have to endure these types of tragic incidents, but the community is strong and the community will rally and we’ll work together to get through it again,” the police chief said.
The victims have been identified as James Silcox, 84; Maurice Granat, 84; Gladys Millard, 87; Helen Matheson, 95; Mary Zurawinski, 96; Helen Young, 90; Arpad Horvath, 75; and Maureen Pickering, 79.
Ironically, an obituary for Pickering, who died on March 28, 2014, included the line, “Special thanks to staff at Caressant Care, Woodstock for their wonderful care.”
Caressant Care Nursing and Retirement Homes Ltd., which operates 15 facilities primarily based in small towns, said it is co-operating with police.
With files from The Canadian Press

Julie Ali
The lack of oversight of continuing care facilities makes such scenarios understandable. If you have no one doing audits in a way that problems are detected as was the case of my handicapped sister's situation, and you believe the government is doing the job required well then you don't suspect that residents are dying with death by nurse. It's a sad situation. In my handicapped sister's situation she would have died because the entire system blamed her as being non-compliant. If I had not gone into the nursing home and ensured her compliance nothing would have been done. Despite being with her to ensure compliance she was still taken to hospital. The data card downloads revealed why. The BIPAP machine was not being put on. It's important for families to have a surveillance system to check the staff and the care provider. In this case, no sort of surveillance would have detected the problem other than government autopsy work. How did the RCMP find out about this case? We usually don't get autopsy work on residents at nursing homes for the most part. They seem to be considered at the end game for the most part. Perhaps the higher than normal mortality rate on this nurse's shift raised concerns and that might have caused the administrators to ask for an investigation. But for the most part it is everyone covers their butt and the residents suffer abuse.




Julie Ali
The lack of oversight of continuing care facilities makes such scenarios understandable. If you have no one doing audits in a way that problems are detected as was the case of my handicapped sister's situation, and you believe the government is doing the job required well then you don't suspect that residents are dying with death by nurse. It's a sad situation. In my handicapped sister's situation she would have died because the entire system blamed her as being non-compliant. If I had not gone into the nursing home and ensured her compliance nothing would have been done. Despite being with her to ensure compliance she was still taken to hospital. The data card downloads revealed why. The BIPAP machine was not being put on. It's important for families to have a surveillance system to check the staff and the care provider. In this case, no sort of surveillance would have detected the problem other than government autopsy work. How did the RCMP find out about this case? We usually don't get autopsy work on residents at nursing homes for the most part. They seem to be considered at the end game for the most part. Perhaps the higher than normal mortality rate on this nurse's shift raised concerns and that might have caused the administrators to ask for an investigation. But for the most part it is everyone covers their butt and the residents suffer abuse.

Elizabeth Tracey Mae Wettlaufer, 49, a registered nurse, was charged Tuesday with eight counts of first degree murder involving long-term care homes in…
CALGARYHERALD.COM|BY ,HEATHER RIVERS AND JENNIFER VANDERMEER, POSTMEDIA NEWS

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