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Illinois nursing home sued after video shows staff taunting 91-year-old with dementia

The New York Daily News - 8/11/2019

Aug. 11--An Illinois nursing home is being sued after video surfaced of two staff members taunting a 91-year-old patient with dementia.

The video shows a certified nursing assistant at The Abington, a nursing and rehab center in Glenview, repeatedly place a hospital gown on top of Margaret Collins as she tries to push it away.

"Margaret hates gowns!" the video caption reads, along with two laughing emojis.

"You just can't believe you're seeing this," Collins' daughter, Joan Biebel, told local news station WGN-TV. "You think your mom is safe and now this is going on. You're just trying to figure out what the heck is happening here."

Family members said staff were aware that Collins didn't like hospital gowns and preferred wearing her own clothes.

Brayan Cortez and Jamie Montesa were each charged with misdemeanor disorderly conduct. Cortez was the person seen in the video while Montesa recorded, police said.

Montesa also admitted to recording Collins in her wheelchair on a previous occasion.

"If they're in her room, they should've been there for a reason to help her, assist her, not to exploit her and threaten her and demean her and post it on social media," Biebel told WGN-TV.

Nursing home administrators released the following statement:

"The privacy and dignity of our residents are of the utmost concern at The Abington. Recently, two employees were immediately terminated when it was determined that they violated our standards and policies."

According to police reports, Cortez and Montesa initially returned to work after a six-day suspension. The Illinois Department of Public Health said administrators concluded the allegations were unfounded when co-workers vouched for the two suspects.

"This was a sick game that two CNAs tried to play for their own enjoyment and by filing this lawsuit and pursuing this lawsuit, we will prevent this from happening to other individuals in this facility, as well as other facilities across the state," attorney John Perconti said.

Collins' family has moved her to another facility since the incident took place, but told WGN-TV that her health has deteriorated.


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