Tuesday, November 1, 2016

-- no oversight-- no interest --no autopsies and tons of regulations-----------"Our seniors have a right to live in a safe environment, and cases of mistreatment will absolutely not be tolerated." The province is also investigating and Hoffman said she's "asked that the investigation be expedited in light of the other recent issues at this facility."

and we took our power
and we observed the government of Alberta

and we took our votes
and ended the nonsense of no representation by the Tories

and we took our power
and we observed the government of Alberta

and we took our words
and wrote on social media to show the lack of oversight and interest

and we took our power
and we observed the government of Alberta

and we wrote on our blogs for years
so as to document abuses and disasters   that were explained to us "as abuse will not be tolerated"

and we took our power
and we observed the government of Alberta

and we wrote on Facebook to say that abuse is tolerated
and endured by citizens     but of course you will not know this until  you experience it

and we took our power

and we observed the government of Alberta

and we wrote our own books so that the adverse events
and deaths would be remembered    the system fails to learn from them but repeats them

and we took our power
and we observed the government of Alberta

and here is the lesson for the families
don't wait for government     activate yourself to go public

and we took our power
and we observed the government of Alberta


Lilly Wood & The Prick and Robin Schulz - Prayer in C (Robin Schulz Remix)

UPDATED: Youville Home targeted as family speaks out
St. Albert family says 80-year-old mother received inadequate care
Saturday, Mar 17, 2012 06:00 am
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  • LONG-TERM CONCERNS - Beth Podgurny of St. Albert discusses her concerns about the treatment that Podgurny's 80-year-old mother received at Youville Home and an Edmonton private long-term care facility.
  • LONG-TERM CONCERNS - Beth Podgurny of St. Albert discusses her concerns about the treatment that Podgurny's 80-year-old mother received at Youville Home and an Edmonton private long-term care facility.
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A St. Albert family is speaking out about the care their 80-year-old mother received, both at Youville Home in St. Albert and at a private Edmonton facility that they say evicted the senior after the family refused to pay higher fees.
Beth Podgurny came forward Wednesday after she says Tranquillity Care Homes Inc. evicted her 80-year-old mother Grace Denyer via ambulance when her family refused to pay a steep rent increase.
Denyer was moved to the facility after Podgurny said the family became fed up with inadequate care from the Youville. Denyer first went to the Youville in February 2010, but Podgurny said inadequate care forced the family to move her to the private facility in December.

Youville concerns

Podgurny said her mother suffered from rashes, chronic urinary tract infections and bleeding from being left for hours in soiled diapers.
She said her mother suffered a stroke, which staff appeared to ignore and that only after the family insisted was her mother was taken to hospital where the stroke and a fractured elbow were treated.
Her family believes the conditions at the home accelerated Denyer’s dementia.
“We believe the lack of basic care contributed to her health issues,” Podgurny said.
Charmaine Ford, director of care at Youville Home, said staff worked closely with the family and provided good care.
“We really did work hard with this family throughout the time their mom lived in Youville,” she said. “We tried very, very hard to come up with a satisfactory resolution and it is unfortunate we didn’t arrive at that.”

Complaint filed

The family filed a complaint with Protection for Persons in Care, an agency within Alberta Seniors that looks into abuse allegations.
Due to privacy regulations, Ford could not get into details about Denyer’s health and her care, but said Youville supports the agency’s conclusion.
“We fully co-operated with that investigation and we were fully satisfied with its findings that certain abuse allegations were unfounded.”
According to both the family and a spokesperson with Alberta Seniors, the complaint was a split decision. The agency found that one issue the family raised was founded while the other was not. None of the parties would provide a copy of the decision and the family is appealing the decision that one of the issues was unfounded.
Ford said Youville Home can deal with patients with complex needs like Denyer’s and tries to keep such patients in the centre unless their health-care needs become incredibly onerous.
“We make every effort to try to keep them in their home, which we consider Youville, however there are times where we need external resources,” she said.
The home is well staffed, exceeding provincial standards, she added.
“The staffing levels in all facilities are designated by the Nursing Home Act and the act requires that you have a certain percentage of staff per resident per day,” she said. “At any given time we exceed the expectation of the Nursing Home Act.”

Private concern

At the private facility in Edmonton, Denyer’s health improved, but money became a central issue. Podgurny said despite having a contract in place for the monthly fee, the owner demanded an increase from $3,495 per month to $4,995.
When the family refused to pay the increase, Podgurny said her mother was evicted.
“She called an ambulance, I guess, and had her evicted by ambulance to the hospital and we weren’t notified until after the fact,” she said.
Podgurny said doctors at the Grey Nuns hospital, where her mother was taken, could see no medical reason for the impromptu transfer and she believes it was about nothing more than money.
“We never got any indication that her medical care needed to be increased at all,” she said.
In an email sent Thursday, facility owner Karen Cazemier said Denyer needed a much higher level of care than the family suggested. She said Denyer was hitting staff and screaming.
“Her behaviours were causing a huge disturbance in the home for other residents and waking them up at night and during the day,” Cazemier wrote.
She said the demand for increased funds was to bring on a full-time staff member to deal specifically with Denyer.
“We wanted to hire a special caregiver for just her (full time) to care for her one on one throughout the day to minimize the impact on the other residents. This was why we asked for the increase in funds.”
She said Denyer was taken to hospital because she was bleeding and was spitting out her medication.
The family responded to those comments Friday, saying their mother could barely lift her arms, let out alone hit staff. They said they were never made aware of any of these concerns.

Larger concern

Public Interest Alberta brought Denyer’s case before the media. Noel Somerville, chair of the group’s seniors’ task force, said the eviction is a sign the government should curtail plans for more private seniors care.
“For-profit facilities are less likely to provide quality care than not-for-profit or public facilities. Care and profit just don’t seem to mix,” he said.
Choking back tears, Podgurny said the system failed her mother and she couldn’t stop it.
“I said I would never let that happen to my mother, never before she was in long-term care when I heard these stories and then it happened right before my eyes and I couldn’t do anything to stop it,” she said.
She demanded the government do more to help seniors like her mother and called for other people to come forward with their own stories.
“Today, my family wants answers from the Conservative government. Why is it possible for our mother and our family to be treated in this appalling condition?”
She said government action was the only way to address the bigger issue.
“I think the Alberta government has to step up to the plate. They have to realize that our senior citizens are vulnerable and they have to be taken care of,” she said.
Cazemier also weighed on the state of seniors’ care in the province and said the solution is not more government involvement, but less.
“My suggestion for the government would be that they allow a stipend or a monthly allotment for long-term care patients and allow families to choose where they want to put their parents instead of the government choosing certain facilities to fund,” she said.
In the legislature Wednesday, Health Minister Fred Horne said the province has very strict health standards for continuing care that apply equally to residents in privately-funded, publicly-funded, and not-for-profit facilities.
Horne said the private facility in question is not publicly funded in any way.
“They are not under contract with Alberta Health Services to provide health care,” he said. “They are in no way funded by this government to deliver any form of care. To the extent that they may have misrepresented the services that they provide to Albertans, we think that’s very unfortunate for the family.”

Patient in long-term care has face nibbled by mice

Michael Platt_op
MouseFile photo

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A patient immobilized in bed, waking up to find mice eating her face.
It has the makings of a health-care horror story — Friends of Medicare says the night-time ravaging by rodents left a Lethbridge senior nursing minor wounds to her face. And it could have been so much worse.
“She’s immobile — she couldn’t even wake up and shoo these things away,” said Sandra Azocar, executive director of the health-care advocacy group.
“It’s beyond comprehension, unfathomable, that this could happen to someone.”
According to Azocar, the mouse-bite victim lives in the dementia unit at St. Therese Villa, a modern 200-bed facility with a history of problems with mice and bed bugs, blamed by some on a policy which allows residents to bring their own furniture with them from home.
The senior, who can’t move, was allegedly saved on Sept. 1 by staff doing overnight checks at the Covenant Health facility.
Azocar says a caregiver was doing the rounds, only to find a pack of mice feeding on the dementia patient. Later, a nest of the rodents was located in her closet.
“One of the staff of that facility walked into this resident’s room and found mice nibbling on her face,” said Azocar, adding the patient has been treated and is recovering, though she remains emotionally distraught.
It’s a gruesome claim that already has Alberta Health Minister Fred Horne demanding answers.
“I must say I was very, very disappointed to learn of this this morning and I have a tremendous number of questions about what exactly is going on here,” said Horne.
The Minister immediately ordered Alberta Health Services and Alberta Health to conduct a care audit at the facility, which opened in 2008.
“This is completely unacceptable whatever the circumstances are and quality trumps all in the health system,” said Horne.
“We’ll be looking into exactly how this happened and of course making sure it never happens again. It’s completely unacceptable in this province and I won’t tolerate it.”
Strong words from the minister, but Friends of Medicare — no surprise — says the province is to blame for allowing staffing standards to slip to the point where patients become prey.
“I think it speaks loudly to a systematic issue with senior care in this province — there is not enough staff for one thing,” said Azocar.
“We have one staff for 15 dementia patients at night, and these are people who require ongoing care.”
Azocar says vermin problems have been ongoing for a year, and bed bugs have been an issue for the past nine months.
Sheli Murphy, vice-president of operations with Covenant Health, said officials first learned of the still unconfirmed mouse-bite allegations on Monday morning.
“We’re taking a really serious look into the allegations that have come forward and we’re getting to the bottom of this report,” said Murphy.
“If something like this indeed happened, it is incredibly distressing — this has our full attention.”
Covenant Health is a Catholic health-care organization which serves 12 communities across Alberta, working in partnership with Alberta Health Services.
Murphy says the Lethbridge care facility is staffed to current provincial standards of one caregiver for every 12 dementia patients at night.
As well, Murphy said past issues with pests have led to extremely stringent, rapid eradication measures — though the proximity to rural fields means mice sometimes slip back inside the facility.
But the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees says mice at St. Therese Villa are more than a minor pest, and in a letter sent to Covenant Health on Monday, they demanded mice and bedbug issues, if present, be fixed immediately.
“We have formally complained about the issue of a mouse infestation at St. Therese Villa in the past, and understood the situation to be resolved,” aid AUPE spokesperson Dennis Malayko.
“I am very concerned that the issue has either re-emerged, or has been allowed to persist.”

Jun 05, 2014 Media inquiries

Government and AHS committed to improvement in continuing care

The Government of Alberta and Alberta Health Services have accepted all recommendations in two reports released by the Health Quality Council of Alberta on continuing care services.
The Review of Quality Assurance of Continuing Care Health Services in Albertareport requested by the Minister of Health contains nine recommendations, and the Review of Alberta Health Services Continuing Care Waitlist: First Available Appropriate Living Option Policy report requested by AHS contains four recommendations.

Report on Quality Assurance of Continuing Care:

In fall 2013, Health Minister Fred Horne commissioned the Council to do a quality assurance review of the province’s continuing care system, following several incidents occurring in various facilities across the province. The report looks at contract management and oversight for providers of home care and facility-based care for seniors.
“Albertans expect and deserve to be served by a continuing care system that adheres to the highest standards of quality.  While we remain confident Albertans receive good care in most cases, it is clear that in some cases patients, residents and their families have been let down. These reports highlight gaps in quality monitoring and reporting that need to be addressed. Albertans who depend on continuing care services can be confident action is being taken to address these recommendations.”
Health Minister Fred Horne

Key actions to address the report:

  • All provider contracts will move to a standardized Master Services Agreement which includes obligations to adhere to quality standards;
  • The Ministry of Health will be responsible for ensuring compliance with standards  and oversight in the continuing care system;
  • All continuing care operators will be required to achieve and maintain national accreditation standards; and,
  • Continuing care accreditation will be publicly reported.

Report on Continuing Care Placement Policy:

In June 2013, the former 100-kilometre placement policy was cancelled by AHS at the request of the Minister, and AHS asked the Health Quality Council of Alberta to do an independent review of the health authority’s continuing care placement policy.
“The HQCA report makes it clear that Albertans will benefit from a provincial policy that assists with the sometimes difficult transition as a resident moves from independent living to a continuing care facility. The report highlights the complexity of the care continuum and also reinforces the need to engage and consult with a broad range of stakeholders as we develop this provincial policy.”
AHS President and CEO Vickie Kaminski

Key actions to address the report:

  • New policies will be developed to ensure patients will go the closest available bed in or near their home community.  AHS will endeavour to keep couples together whenever possible.
  • Engagement with patients, residents and their families will be undertaken to ensure policies developed are fair, reasonable and take into account their opinions and perspectives.
Under the Building Alberta Plan, our government is investing in families and communities, living within our means, and opening new markets for Alberta's resources to ensure we're able to fund the services Albertans told us matter most to them. We will continue to deliver the responsible change Albertans voted for.

Media inquiries

  • Matthew Grant
  • 780-222-6433
  • Press Secretary, Health
  • Kerry Williamson
  • 780-905-5890
  • Communications, Alberta Health Services


Abused by 'the system'
A daughter's story of her elderly mother's mistreatment in long-term care
Wednesday, Jun 22, 2016 06:00 am
By: Scott Hayes
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  • Cynthia Jonasson wrote this incredible and terribly upsetting book about her mother's mistreatment in a local long-term seniors' care facility. The book receives a launch and discussion event this weekend.
  • Cynthia Jonasson wrote this incredible and terribly upsetting book about her mother's mistreatment in a local long-term seniors' care facility. The book receives a launch and discussion event this weekend.
  • sub


On My Mother's Behalf
by Cynthia Jonasson
157 pages
Can be purchased in store at Chapters or online through Amazon.ca or PageMaster.
It’s a tragic story that simply had to be told. Cynthia Jonasson’s mother, Grace Denyer, passed away four years ago. She was a resident of a local long-term seniors care facility and was mistreated time and time again by staff and managers alike.
Mistreatment is an understatement.
The story made the headlines, but media coverage doesn’t fix what happened. It can only work to prevent the problem from happening again.
That’s why Jonasson (along with her sister Beth Podgurny acting as editor) decided that the story was too important to fade into the background. After all, it’s not the only story that has come out of people’s experiences within ‘the System.’ On My Mother’s Behalf is their new book, recently published and set to receive a book launch and discussion event this Saturday.
For all intents and purposes, it’s one of the most difficult stories that I have ever had to read. It’s also one of the best written: astute, precise, and brutally honest. The only thing that allays the anger that arises from hearing what happened to this woman and her family is the pleasure of reading a piece of non-fiction so professionally produced despite being from a novice author.
Some stories are that important. Jonasson said that it all started as a simple journalling as a way of recording the traumatic events instead of having them always in her head.
“The process of writing started as a cathartic exercise for me,” she began. “Beth took my writings, edited and organized them, and insisted that the story be shared. The decision to publish was tough. At times, I wanted to put my writing on the shelf. However, Beth encouraged me to share the story. In my heart, I knew she was right.”
Sharing the story is one thing but On My Mother’s Behalf is very careful to not name either the facility or the people in the health-care system who were involved. One could simply search through websites of organizations such as the Elder Advocates of Alberta Society to get an education on this and many other cases.
This book very carefully details not only Grace’s physical and psychological mistreatment but also the legal and political fallout that included legislative debate and Jonasson nearly being thrown in jail for her continued calling out of such systemic abuses.
While Grace’s story is now all a matter of record in the newspaper articles and the government reports, it was far more compelling for Jonasson to be non-specific because of how far-reaching the mistreatment goes. Grace, the author says, wasn’t alone.
“Ours is not a unique story. Many seniors and families have had and continue to have similar experiences in many different facilities. To focus on one facility would diminish the pervasiveness of these issues.”
The issues revolve around the lack of basic care and extend into outright abuse. Several times while reading the book, I found myself unable to tolerate even the thought of a person having to suffer as Grace did. I have no personal connection with anyone currently in such a facility but I was outraged. Such is the power of this story.
At the very beginning, Jonasson suggests that people wouldn't believe that it was an accurate retelling of actual events. She later clarified that she wrote this because she couldn’t believe it herself.
“I was experiencing my mother being neglected and abused right before my very eyes and couldn’t do anything about it or stop it. I hope to give a voice to those who are unable to speak for themselves. To bring about awareness. Most people are unaware of what many seniors and their families experience in ‘the System’ until they encounter it themselves.”
“I hope that if I require the same level of care, by that time, ‘the System’ will have improved and no one will be experiencing what many are experiencing today.”
The book has already had two book launch events including one at the Chapters store here in St. Albert. Jonasson and Podgurny indicated that people continue to approach them to tell them their own stories from past and ongoing experiences “often in tears.” They have received thanks even from people working inside these facilities, some of whom she suggested were too afraid to speak out on their own. She encourages readers to be aware of agencies such as Public Interest Alberta and Persons for Protection in Care to get help.
The event takes place on Saturday, June 25 from noon to 4 p.m. Audreys Bookstore is located at Jasper Ave. in Edmonton. Visit www.onmymothersbehalf.ca for more information.


Alberta's health minister says abuse allegations taken seriously

Kipnes Centre for VeteransExterior view of Dianne & Irving Kipnes Centre for Veterans

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Alberta's health minister says the province and city police will get to the bottom of a new allegation of abuse at the Kipnes Centre for Veterans.
"As with any case of reported abuse, we are taking the most recent allegation very seriously, and the Edmonton Police Service is investigating," Health Minister Sarah Hoffman said in a Thursday statement.
"Our seniors have a right to live in a safe environment, and cases of mistreatment will absolutely not be tolerated."
The province is also investigating and Hoffman said she's "asked that the investigation be expedited in light of the other recent issues at this facility."
Allegations of the mistreatment of three residents, she added, were previously investigated under the Protection for Persons in Care Act (PPIC) which will also probe the latest allegation.
She provided no further details but PPIC acting director Margaret Petryszak released redacted reports stating that some staff caused bodily harm to the three clients through "failing to provide adequate nutrition, adequate medical attention or another necessity of life without a valid consent."
"Kipnes has been given directives to which they must respond, and staff involved have been subject to disciplinary action," Hoffman said. "We have also been informed that Capital Care and AHS have both completed reviews at the Centre, and have already taken a number of actions."
Deb Gordon, Alberta Health Services vice-president and Chief Health Operations for Northern Alberta, later provided a statement regarding two PPIC decisions involving Kipnes three residents.
"Our thoughts remain with these residents and their families. Nobody should ever be harmed in any of our facilities, or those of a contracted care provider. Residents and their families have the right to high quality, compassionate care; anything else is unacceptable," said Gordon.
"We will continue to work closely with Capital Care to meet the PPIC recommendations and help ensure residents receive the care and treatment they need."
In parallel with Capital Care's internal review of the incidents, AHS conducted a quality review and provided required actions to Capital Care to address identified areas for improvement. As a result, the following actions are taking place at Kipnes Centre for Veterans:
* Care managers' work assignments have been reviewed and revised to help ensure they have more direct oversight and presence on care units.
* The centre has revised site admission packages and is providing ongoing information to residents and families on how to report concerns.
* Staff education has taken place to:
Remind them to treat residents respectfully and with empathy.
Use appropriate equipment and techniques for moving residents.
Document and report any unusual incidents.
To manage aggressive, physical and verbal behaviours arising from residents' conditions and/or illnesses.
* The Centre has changed its family forum process from a large group to a series of small-scale gatherings for residents and families to allow for open communication, share concerns and challenges, discuss ideas, and provide education.
AHS has provided on-site support and that will continue until AHS is satisfied the actions have been fully implemented, concluded Gordon.



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