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Buffalo

The state Department of Health in the last five years investigated complaints that 35 nursing homes in Erie and Niagara counties failed to provide adequate staffing to care for residents. Yet the agency substantiated only six of the 145 allegations, according to records The Buffalo News obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request. The state’s investigative …

Business

Jennifer Page says she removed her father from an East Aurora nursing home because of mistreatment. Dorothy Carlone says the care her mother receives there is better than she could have imagined. The experiences of these two women with elderly parents at Absolut at Aurora Park could not be more opposite. Page has set up an online petition and is organizing a protest …

Watchdog

Lawrence A. Cappiello writes a check each month for about $12,000 to pay his wife’s nursing home costs. “Two years ago, I was worth half a million dollars,” the 91-year-old Town of Lockport man said. “In less than two more years, our savings will be gone.” Cappiello suffers from a case of nursing home sticker shock, though he says he should have known better. Befo…

Business

Frank L. Williams didn't have bedsores when he left Kenmore Mercy Hospital and entered a nursing home for rehabilitation after a stroke. That fact is established in a document detailing his condition when he entered Safire Rehabilitation of Northtowns in the Town of Tonawanda. Four months later, when he returned to Kenmore Mercy, the 82-year-old retired ironworker ha…

Buffalo

A troubled Delaware Avenue nursing home has boarded up its doors after transferring the last of its residents to other facilities in the city, according to the facility’s state-appointed receiver. The closing of Emerald South Nursing and Rehabilitation Center on Wednesday came four weeks earlier than the projected Jan. 31 closing, according to an official with Grand Hea…

Business

A state senator from Niagara County announced Thursday he is proposing a package of bills to protect nursing home residents and improve the care they receive in facilities across the state. State Sen. Rob Ortt, R-North Tonawanda, said that, while he was prompted into action by a series of stories published by The Buffalo News about abuses at local nursing homes, the bil…

Buffalo

How can you find out if a nursing home in New York State is good or bad? There are a number of ways. There is a lot of information about New York's 619 nursing homes on the state Department of Health website and the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services' Nursing Home Compare website at medicare.gov/NursingHomeCompare. Each website provides details on how…

Buffalo

The call from the hospital jolted Henry Kostrzewa's sister. Erie County Medical Center was going to discharge the 52-year-old disabled welder and she needed to help him pick a nursing home. The clock was ticking. Kostrzewa had been informed he could end up personally responsible for his hospital bills because he had been "medically cleared" to move into a nursing hom…

Watchdog

It’s what you don’t see, smell or hear that separates Elderwood at Lancaster from poorly run nursing homes. There are no pungent odors from incontinence that often are a telltale sign in low-rated nursing homes. The air smells clean. The floors shine. There is no undercurrent of tension. At short-staffed nursing homes, conversations between staff and residents someti…

Buffalo

Patricia Myers suspected the staff at the Buffalo nursing home was not feeding her bedridden husband. When she shaved him, he sometimes tried to eat the shaving cream. "Are you hungry?" she asked. Paralyzed from a degenerative neurological disease, Larry K. Myers managed to yell one of the few words he could still speak: "Yeah!" His wife said she complained rep…

Business

Shirley Burrows needed follow-up treatment for three “superficial” bedsores when she was discharged from a Lockport hospital to a Newfane nursing home. Instead of getting better, Burrows’ sores worsened, her attorneys said. The wounds became infected, and a bone in Burrows' lower back was exposed. A Niagara County jury earlier this week awarded $1.25 million to the 7…

Buffalo

Understaffing is a common problem in many of the worst-rated nursing homes in Western New York. Residents in these facilities often must wait long periods to be taken to the bathroom, have their diapers changed or receive assistance in being fed, according to their relatives. A proposed state bill would require nursing homes and hospitals to maintain specific minimum…

Buffalo

New York State gave licenses to operate at least 10 Buffalo area nursing homes in the last decade to new owners who had been fined for providing poor care to residents at other nursing homes. Advocates for nursing home residents say the state must do more to prevent nursing home owners providing low-quality care from buying more long-term care facilities. "It is a re…

Buffalo

A federal penalty denying Medicare and Medicaid payments to a Buffalo nursing home that will soon close was made public this week. Emerald South Nursing and Rehabilitation Center was denied payments for an 18-day period starting Sept. 15, based on violations detailed in a state Health Department inspection report, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid posted on its webs…

Buffalo

A monitor attached to Jameir Benn’s toe should have alerted staff in a Buffalo nursing home that he had stopped breathing. But on that February 2015 evening, only one worker in HighPointe on Michigan's pediatric unit was wearing a pager, and he did not respond to the urgent alert. When a nurse returned to Jameir’s room more than an hour later, the 16-month-old boy had c…