116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
An Iowa nursing home where a resident was found dead in a pool of blood last summer after a series of falls has been fined $18,000 by the state.
Reports from the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals indicate that on June 11, 2021, a worker at the Exira Care Center in Audubon County, which is west of Des Moines, found a female resident of the home lying face down on the floor of her room, dead and “in a puddle of blood.” She had lacerations to right eye and her upper lip. A funeral home was called to pick up the body.
During the preceding two months, the woman had fallen several times at the home, inspectors alleged. On April 7, 2021, she fell and sustained a broken arm. Days later, on April 12, she was found on the floor with “a large amount of blood under her head,” inspectors reported, after she fell and injured her head and hip.
The Exira Care Center was cited by state inspectors for having failed to report the April 12, 2021, head injury to the Department of Inspections and Appeals as required. According to the inspectors, the home said it felt no report was necessary since a brain bleed that was spotted during the woman’s hospitalization had actually stemmed from the April 7 fall at the facility.
The home’s director nursing allegedly told inspectors that due to a staffing crisis during the COVID-19 pandemic, the facility had difficulty hiring workers and did not have enough staff on hand to provide residents with prescribed restorative care and services.
The home was cited for 11 federal violations, including deficiencies related to comprehensive care plans, overall quality of care, pressure sores, resident records, immunizations, the reporting of alleged violations and the accuracy of resident assessments.
The state fined the home a total of $18,000 for violations related to environmental hazards, medication and treatment.
The inspection was triggered by four complaints, three of which were substantiated, and three self-reported incidents at the home. The administrator of the home, Steve Fister, was not available for comment Tuesday.
This article first appeared in the Iowa Capital Dispatch.