C.M. Tucker Jr. Nursing Care Center Abuse and Neglect Attorneys

Abuse and Neglect

Like most busy families, you have neither the time nor the skills to provide care for your sick or aging loved one. As many families do, you look for quality professional care arrangements in a location that is also close to home. Despite your diligence, you will not always find out when a facility has a history of abuse and neglect.

If you lived in Columbia, South Carolina, for a decade or more, you might have seen reports about the C.M. Tucker Jr. Nursing Care Center. Like many facilities that care for chronically ill and aging residents, it has a reputation. The facility has improved significantly from a dark past that included questionable care and needless patient deaths. Based on recent inspection reports and our own experience at Hughey Law Firm, however, problems may still exist.

Before you place your loved one in this facility, conduct your own independent review. If your loved one is a current resident, watch carefully each time you visit.

If you suspect that your loved one is a neglect or abuse victim at C.M. Tucker Care Center, consult a nursing abuse and neglect attorney at Hughey Law Firm. We have pursued and won cases for residents there for the shameful, negligent care that injured our clients. We can protect your loved one’s legal rights and seek justice for their injuries.

“Identifying Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect”nursing care center abuse and neglect attorneys

To understand the challenges aging and sick loved ones often face, you must understand common types of nursing home abuse and neglect. Research has shown that people with cognitive, memory, behavioral, and physical impairments remain most at risk for harm. Impairments sometimes prevent victims from understanding, remembering, or talking about abusive or neglectful patterns or incidents.Sadly, abuse and neglect occur so often in long-term care facilities that government agencies have documented and categorized the most common incidents.

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When you know what to look for, you have a better chance of recognizing abuse and neglect when they occur.

  • Physical Abuse: Intentional or negligent acts that cause injuries, impairments, and pain
  • Sexual Abuse: Any non-consensual sex contact
  • Emotional or Psychological Abuse: Intentional physical or verbal acts that humiliate or threaten
  • Neglect: Inferior care that allows malnourishment, dehydration, bedsores, overmedication, etc.
  • Financial Abuse: Fraudulent use of money, property, or assets

The C.M. Tucker Jr. Nursing Care Center

The Tucker Nursing Care Center is at 2200 Harden Street in Columbia, South Carolina. The South Carolina Department of Mental Health owns and operates the facility. The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) certifies it. The Tucker facility has one location with separate residential areas.

The Roddey Pavilion is a long-term care facility. It provides skilled nursing care for adults with a range of chronic medical conditions. Many residents also require psychiatric or neurological treatment. The center has no website, but its Facebook page mentions that the Roddey Pavilion also provides addiction support. The Stone Veterans Pavilion and Fewel Pavilion house qualified veterans who require long-term care.

The facility offers 24-hour medical and nursing care. They also provide a pharmacy, rehabilitative therapy, social services, recreation, chaplaincy, transportation, a barber and beauty shop, dietary services, housekeeping, and laundry.

A History of Abuse and Neglect

The SCDMH opened the Tucker nursing home in 1983. When searching for information online, you find no significant history until 2008. That is when the Department of Justice published its findings after conducting an on-site investigation. In its final report, the DOJ stated, “numerous conditions and practices at Tucker violate the constitutional and federal statutory rights of its residents.”

The investigative team documented specific abuse and neglect incidents, some of which contributed to resident fatalities. They identified numerous operational and care inadequacies.

Here are just a few.

  • Inadequate medical and mental health assessments, diagnoses, and psychiatric services.
  • Inadequate treatment for dysphagia, a swallowing disorder: In one instance, a resident lost 20 percent of their body weight due to inadequate food intake. They later died because the nursing home did not implement a safe eating technique.
  • Inappropriate use of psychoactive medication.
  • Inadequate palliative and end-of-life care.
  • Inadequate death reviews: insufficient to uncover care problems.

The Facility Is Still Dealing With Resident Care Issues

The DOJ hasn’t investigated the C.M. Tucker Jr. Nursing Care Center in a decade. The prior problems remain relevant, however, as the most recent CMS surveys reflect similar inadequacies.

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Inspections

ProPublica’s Nursing Home Inspect pages provide the most efficient means for accessing CMS online nursing home data. If you search the CMS Compare Care website, you only find the facility you are looking for when you have the exact name. When you visit ProPublica’s South Carolina nursing home list, you will find links to CMS data and resources. Both ProPublica and CMS publish Tucker Nursing Home information on separate profile pages.

C.M. Tucker Jr. Nursing Care Center Roddey Pavilion

  • Number of Patient Beds: 308
  • Overall Rating: Two-Star, “below average”
  • Health Inspections: One-star,” much below average,” based on complaints and infection control inspections
  • Staffing: Five-star, “much above average,” based on RN, LPN/LVN, and physical therapists’ time spent with residents, and also staff turnover rates
  • Quality of Care: Three-Star, “average” based on re-hospitalizations, outpatient ER visits, antipsychotic medication use, and other measures
  • Penalties: 0 in the past three years
  • COVID-19 Statistics: 49 resident cases, 10 resident fatalities; 85 staff cases, two staff fatalities

The Roddey Pavilion’s Recent CMS Survey/Inspections:

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control conducts surveys for CMS. They make spontaneous visits and also investigate when they receive a complaint.

Over a recent three-year span, CMS has posted four surveys/inspections for the Roddey Pavilion.

  • 10-22-2020: The facility did not protect a resident from a custodial worker’s verbal abuse. They also did not file a timely report about the incident. Physicians previously diagnosed the resident with anxiety, neurocognitive and behavioral disorders, and other conditions.
  • 1-3-2020: The staff’s lunch routine involved placing lunch trays in front of residents who could not feed themselves due to physical and cognitive issues. Residents had to wait for up to 25 minutes before a CNA helped them eat. The Director of Nursing told the surveyor that someone has to wait when they have a staff shortage.
  • 10-4-2018: Staff did not notify the representative about a resident’s emergency transfer to an acute care hospital. The report included these additional items.
  • Inappropriate compliance with physician’s orders.
  • Staff did not follow protocol to ensure food safety.
  • A surveyor witnessed an LPN dropping a resident’s pills (one fell to the floor). They then gave the contaminated pill to the resident.
  • August 16, 2017: Staff failed to comply with required daily dressing changes for a resident’s diabetic foot ulcers. Despite the doctor’s orders, the staff gave the dressing minimal attention over two months. The incident resulted in staff re-training and disciplinary terminations.

C.M. Tucker Jr. Nursing Care (Stone and Fewell)

  • Number of Patient Beds: 252
  • Overall rating: Three-Star “average”
  • Health Inspections: Two-Star “below average”
  • Staffing: Five-Star, “much above average”
  • Quality of Care: Four-Star, “above average”
  • Penalties: One in the last three years, $6,500 on 9-22-2020
  • COVID-19 Statistics: 51 resident cases, 7 resident fatalities; 72 staff cases, 0 staff fatalities 

C.M. Tucker Jr. Nursing Care (Stone and Fewell Pavilions) Recent CMS Survey/Inspections

Over the past five years, CMS has posted four surveys/inspections of the Tucker Veteran’s nursing home units.

  • September 22, 2020: Inspectors determined that two residents who had tested positive for COVID-19 were not in a COVID unit away from residents who tested negative. Staff who worked with both positive and negative COVID patients wore only surgical masks instead of more protective N95 masks.
  • January 9, 2020: Staff did not intervene to protect at-risk residents from pressure sores. One cognitively impaired resident developed stage II sores.
  • December 5, 2019: Intake staff did not complete a timely resident assessment and care plan. The physician ordered antipsychotic and antianxiety medications only after the resident had physical altercations with other residents.
  • Jun 1, 2017: No deficiencies.

Resident Care Has Improved Over Time

When you review C.M. Tucker Jr. Care Center’s recent surveys, you see a distinct improvement over 2008. Of course, they still have issues, so you should never let your guard down. If your loved one is in Tucker’s or any nursing home, you must understand the common issues many nursing homes face.

They do not always have enough staff to manage the people in their care. Staff does not always have the training they need to function professionally. Abuse and neglect do occur.

C.M. Tucker Jr. Nursing Care Center Abuse and Neglect Attorneys

If your loved one resides at C.M. Tucker Jr. Nursing Care Center and you see signs of harm, consult a nursing home abuse and neglect attorney immediately. At your free consultation, you spend time asking questions and talking about your concerns. You learn more about nursing home negligence and abuse.

You will find out about your loved one’s legal options and get an opinion from a nursing home lawyer at Hughey Law Firm about how best to proceed. We have fought—and won—cases against the C.M. Tucker Jr. Nursing Care Center and dozens of facilities like it that should have eased the lives of residents and their families but instead left them with preventable, devastating injuries.

For your free case evaluation, call us at (843) 881-8644 or reach out to us using our contact page. We’ll do everything we can to help you.