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Colfax Nursing Home Fined $20,000

Jun 6, 2003 | Pontiac Daily Leader

Heritage Manor in Colfax has been fined $20,000 by the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) for failure to protect residents from sexual abuse, the department announced today.

The 60-bed skilled care facility is located at 402 S. Harrison in Colfax.

Responding to complaints, Department of Public Health investigators learned facility administration "failed to properly investigate allegations of sexual abuse of two residents by a staff member and to report the information to the Department as required by state law," the department said in a news release.

On one occasion, according to IDPH, an employee responded to a resident's screams for help and found a male employee standing over the resident. The woman was wearing only a nightgown, which was pulled up around her neck. On another night, the same man was seen going out a resident's window by an employee who entered the room to check on the woman after hearing a noise, the department said in its news release. Both women indicated to staff that they had been inappropriately touched, IDPH said.

"These incidents were reported to the director of nursing (DON), who is responsible for conducting all abuse and neglect investigations," according to the news release. "The DON, who was married to the alleged perpetrator, failed to thoroughly investigate the incidents and allowed the employee to continue working with residents. The DON and the alleged perpetrator are no longer employed at the facility."

The department-ordered plan of correction requires the facility to review and revise, as necessary, its policies and procedures regarding abuse, to ensure all cases of abuse are thoroughly investigated and reported to IDPH and to bar any employee suspected of abuse from further contact with residents pending the outcome of the investigation

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