Assisted living community accused of abuse and neglect, ordered to close

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A Florida assisted living and memory care community has been ordered to close because it “turned a blind eye to the health and well-being of those residents known to have been victimized” by a male resident with diagnoses of dementia and sex addiction, among other issues, the state Agency for Health Care Administration wrote in an emergency order.

Grace Manor in Port Orange, FL, must transfer all of its residents to other facilities by July 26 and then close, Florida AHCA said. In the meantime, it cannot accept new residents. The facility has 30 days from July 11, the date of the order, to appeal.

“We're working diligently with our corporation and our attorneys to battle this out. We don't anticipate closing,” a Grace Manor employee who answered the phone but did not want to be identified told McKnight's Senior Living.  “We love our residents and want to remain open.”

The Florida AHCA order noted several occasions when staff members at Grace Manor saw a male resident inappropriately touch or kiss female residents. On two separate occasions, staff members reportedly found the man in bed with a female resident who was partially nude and calling for help.

The agency noted that, for many of the cases, the community's records show no signs that the incidents were investigated and that residents' families, state or local law enforcement or protective services were notified. Nor does it appear that the man underwent a psychiatric evaluation and monitoring, despite recommendations from his physician, Florida AHCA said.

Staff members were told to lock residents in their rooms to prevent the man from accessing the other residents, the agency said. “In addition to wrongly confining residents to their rooms, this practice could prove catastrophic in the event of an emergent situation,” Florida AHCA wrote, noting that several residents were not capable of unlocking their doors.

Grace Manor violated “residents' rights to be free from abuse or neglect,” the agency wrote.

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