By Sylvia Gonzalez
BIG SPRING - A nursing home in Big Spring is under fire. A lawsuit has been filed by the state detailing a year of alleged abuse and negligence by the staff. The Laman-Lusk-Sanchez State Veterans Home is accused of threatening the health and safety of their residents.
NewsWest 9 spoke with Jim Suydam, who is the Press Officer for the Texas Veterans Land Board, he says this all stems from an old case.
"The Texas Department and Disability Services (DADS) and the operator of the home, Sears Methodist are working through a settlement negotiation on a 2012 incident investigation. This is part of that settlement negotiation," Suydam said.
The incident Suydam is referring to is one in which an 87-year-old resident showed signs of hypoglycemia. A Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) claimed she made one attempt to call the resident's doctor but received no answer.
The LVN treated the resident with juice and sugar, but she never made any further attempt to reach the doctor, even though the residents blood sugar levels remained outside the prescribed parameters for over 30 minutes.
She also failed to notify the Registered Nurse or call 911 when the resident's blood sugar level increased, the patient died one hour later.
Cecilia Cavuto, Press Officer for the Department of Aging and Disability Services, says they conducted an investigation in May of 2012 and based on what they discovered, they felt the nursing home was not in compliance.
"If we find a situation that we feel is placing the health or safety of residents in immediate jeopardy then our investigation is going to be a little bit more dramatic," Cavuto said.
NewsWest 9 reached out to the Attorney Generals office. Although they couldn't comment on the lawsuit, they did say the operators of the center could face anywhere from $1,000 to $20,000 per day for each violation that threatened the health and safety of the resident.
Suydam feels confident the facility is running everything by the book. In fact, he encourages anyone in the community to drop by anytime and see for themselves.