Nursing home slapped with $1.5 million fine over smoking policy enforcement, supervision

Share this article:

A Virginia nursing home faces a $1.45 million verdict in a negligence suit involving a former resident who sustained severe burns.

The resident, Joseph Roberts, brought the charges in 2011. In June of that year, he sustained severe burns while residing at Carriage Hill Health & Rehabilitation Center in Fredericksburg. Staff allegedly left Roberts unattended outside the facility while he smoked a cigarette, which led to the fire, according to local reports.

Roberts died in June 2013, at the age of 49. The cause of death was not related to his burns.

Carriage Hill was negligent in leaving Roberts alone, the suit contended. He was on pain medication and wheelchair-bound at the time of the incident, but staff discovered him on the ground with his sweatpants on fire, according to court papers. The center also has a no-smoking policy, and inspections after the incident cited the facility for not enforcing that policy consistently.

Carriage Hill “is committed to providing safe and professional care” and may appeal, according to defense attorney Juliane Miller of the Hudgins Law Firm.  

Share this article:

More in News

NY nursing home agrees to $2.2 million settlement in case of false documentation

NY nursing home agrees to $2.2 million settlement ...

Nursing home operator Ralex Services Inc. has agreed to a $2.2 million settlement in a whistleblower case involving forged documents at a facility in New Rochelle, New York.

Common soaps could endanger healthcare workers, study finds

Healthcare facilities should consider replacing antibacterial soaps containing the chemical triclosan, University of California-San Francisco researchers assert in a recent Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine article. The conclusion echoes recently updated hand hygiene guidelines.

Mandatory staff hours, better high-acuity care could improve quality of life in ...

A nursing home's staffing patterns and admissions trends are among the most important factors driving residents' quality of life over time, according to recently published research findings.