Former nursing home staffer charged with manslaughter after ignoring facility's lift protocols

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A former aide at one Minnesota nursing home has been charged with manslaughter, after shirking the facility's lift procedures.

The charges stem from the Sept. 17 death of Evelyn Augusta Schweim, a 100-year-old resident at Good Samaritan Society nursing home, in Redwood Falls. Francisco Javier Ramirez, 29, was attempting to transfer the resident out of a bathtub with a mechanical lift, but he failed to follow proper procedures, leading to her tumbling and sustaining multiple fractures that nearly detached her left foot. She later died from those injuries, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

Ramirez allegedly ignored policies by raising the lift up to its highest level, at 5 feet, and did so without the help of a second staffer, as required. He also further failed protocols by moving Schweim away from the door by pulling her gown, and also left her alone in the bathroom when he went to get help, a Minnesota Department of Health investigation found.

Records reviews by the local police found that Ramirez had been trained properly in lift protocols, which called for the mechanism to be raised no higher than 2 feet. He has been charged with second-degree manslaughter, two counts of criminal neglect and one count of mistreatment of patients, and is expected to make an initial court appearance today, June 25, the newspaper reports.