Reporting Bob Roberts
CHICAGO (WBBM) - State regulators uncovered only minor problems and made three arrests on outstanding warrants while conducting unannounced checks of two west suburban nursing homes.
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At the Wood Glen Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, 30 W. 300 North Av., in West Chicago, employee Stella Leone was arrested on an outstanding theft warrant, while resident Chris Rauch faced arrest on a DUI warrant, said attorney general’s office spokesperson Robyn Ziegler.
She said that at the Westmont Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, 6501 S. Cass Av., in Westmont, employee Doris Ezeolisa was arrested for driving with a suspended license.
State regulators, led by the attorney general’s office, undertook the Operation Guardian initiative in February, and these marked the 22nd and 23rd unannounced inspections since then.
“We go in with other state agencies and the goal is to ensure that nursing home residents are safe and receiving the compassionate care they deserve,” Ziegler said.
More nursing home checks are already in the works, she said.
At Wood Glen, one resident turned up on a list of missing persons, but Ziegler said a further check showed that the mentally-challenged man had already been reunited with his mother, who had reported him missing. The report had not been removed from the database.
Regulators are looking primarily to see that neither employees nor residents have violent criminal backgrounds or are sex offenders. Ziegler said that no such problems were found at the West Chicago or Westmont facilities.
Perhaps the most egregious problems found in an Illinois nursing home check in recent years occurred in 2005, when state regulators shut down the Emerald Park Health Care facility, in Evergreen Park, following a raid that found 10 sex offenders living in the facility, including two who were unregistered, and a female resident who had a sexually transmitted disease exchanging sex for cigarettes and other favors with fellow residents.
The facility has since been torn down.