Sep 13, 2023 | By: Lakeland News

Updated: Wadena Assisted Living Facility Found to Have Neglected Resident Following Death

*This story has been updated with a statement from The Meadows of Wadena.

A Minnesota Department of Health investigation has found a Wadena assisted living facility neglected a resident when staff failed to assess a resident’s ability to use bed rails after she experienced a change in condition.

The resident at The Meadows of Wadena became entrapped in a bed rail on July 30 and died. A hospice nurse told investigators the condition of the woman who died had declined over the last few weeks of her life, and that she would not have been able to use bed rails safely. Other records obtained in the investigation also showed the woman was at high risk for injury if a side rail was in use due to her cognition/Alzheimer’s dementia.

A preliminary autopsy report indicated the resident’s cause of death was probable asphyxia. The Department of Health determined in its investigation that maltreatment occurred and the facility was responsible for the maltreatment.

The Meadows of Wadena released a statement to Lakeland News on Sep. 14 regarding the incident.

“The recent passing of one of our residents was a tragic loss for their family and friends and for those who cared for our resident; on behalf of everyone on The Meadows of Wadena team, we offer our deepest sympathies to their loved ones for their loss. 

“As is the case any time there’s an unanticipated death in a facility such as ours, we reported the event to our regulator, the Minnesota Department of Health. Consistent with our values, we worked closely with the MDH personnel who responded in this situation to ensure they had everything they needed to conduct a complete investigation. While we have deep respect for the Department’s role and responsibilities, we believe the facts do not match the conclusion the Department reached in this matter and are appealing its findings. We have every expectation that an independent examination of the facts will substantiate our position.”

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