KIRAN: Alleged neglect at a Louisiana nursing home complaints include nurses unavailable, unsanitary conditions, patients not receiving medicine, and meals

PLAQUEMINE, La. (WAFB) - A former employee of a Louisiana nursing home is sounding the alarm about allegations of neglect and abuse. WAFB's Chief Investigator Kiran Chawla looked into the claims.

WATCH THE STORY that aired on WAFB 9News at 10 on Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Iberville Oaks Nursing & Rehab is located in Plaquemine, La. A phone call to 911 placed in May of 2019 summarizes the heart of the problem.

The resident, who previously suffered a stroke, is very difficult to understand.

DISPATCHER: 911, what is your emergency? What's your name? What do you need?

RESIDENT: A nurse [inaudible]

DISPATCHER: You need a nurse?


DISPATCHER: Did you hit the call button for the nurse?


DISPATCHER: And they didn't come talk to you? The nurse isn't there?


The dispatcher tries calling the nursing home herself, but gives up and calls the sheriff's office to dispatch a deputy instead.

A deputy had to track down a nurse for the resident. The deputy's report indicates the resident had vomited on himself in the morning hours, but no one came to check on him or clean him up.

In just the past month, our search of records shows Iberville deputies have been called to this same nursing home three other times, most recently for a fight that broke out in the parking lot. Another report is from a resident's loved one, alleging the resident "has been mistreated for some time now."

She even reported the resident allegedly "did not receive her medication on the night of June 23, 2019 due to not having any registered nurses on staff that night."

“It's very uncommon for deputies to have to go to a nursing home, getting calls from the family, and in fact, sometimes patients,” said Iberville Parish Sheriff Brett Stassi.

Sheriff Stassi says the typical call to a nursing home is far less concerning.

“We got calls where we go unlock cars for families, we unlock cars for employees there, but this is out of the ordinary to have these types of calls back to back to back.”

It's why Sheriff Stassi says he had to contact the Louisiana Department of Health (LDH) asking them to visit the home.

Another report to Sheriff Stassi came from an employee at Iberville Oaks, claiming a nurse at the facility "threatened to hit her in the face and also her aunt."

Bessie Grainier is who made that complaint.

"The things I saw there, in my book, are ungodly," she said. "A dog does not get treated that way, much less a human. It's just awful."

She was the housekeeping and laundry supervisor, but she says she was forced out on June 7 by means of a demotion and a cut in her pay.

KIRAN: What went through your mind when they told you this?

GRAINIER: They was retaliating against me because of everything that was going on.

KIRAN: What did you see while you were at this nursing home?

GRAINIER: I seen people not fed. I seen people not bathed. I seen people laying with no sheets on the bed.

Grainier's aunt is a resident at the nursing home. For all those reasons, she says she started documenting incidents with photos and recordings.

Grainier captured these images on her phone. She says, "That's food trays that they would not serve to the residents when they were not fed. That is a bed with BM on it. That is my aunt's room. She was laying in that."

She also recorded her conversations with the nurse responsible for watching over her aunt.

GRAINIER: We don't stir up a mess. Y'all...

NURSE: I'm not talking to you. I'm talking to this woman. You don't tell me what I don't do. You are bottom of the barrel, housekeeping.

GRAINIER: You don't talk to me like you want to talk to me.

NURSE: I will talk to you however I want to.

GRAINIER: You want respect, you have to give respect.


All of this is why Grainier also went to LDH. She says they listened, sending five inspectors for multiple days.

WAFB has requested records from the state about their recent visits, but those records are not ready yet. LDH issued the following statement:

"The department has increased monitoring and oversight for Iberville Oaks and is currently surveying the facility and investigating complaints."

We've repeatedly called nursing home administrator Mandy Henry. When we asked for her by name, Kiran was told "there's no one here by that name." She she asked the name of the current administrator, the person on the other end hung up.

Sources say the director of nursing, assistant director of nursing and corporate nurse are all out, as well as the former administrator just out late last week.

Meanwhile, this former employee, family members of current residents, and even the sheriff are sounding the alarm.

“Don't just deposit these people over there,” said Sheriff Stassi. “Follow up on them. Just because they are out of sight, out of mind, they are still your loved ones.”

Since Kiran began investigating, there have been several more complaints to the Iberville Parish Sheriff's Office. They included similar complaints of residents not getting medicine, sometimes skipping entire meals and even nursing home staff members laughing at people when they tried to get the nurses attention by literally blowing a whistle.

This is not the first time a member of the WAFB Investigators has been called to report on this nursing home. In 2017, Cheryl Mercedes conducted an extensive investigation, which resulted in some change to administration.

What happens to your parents in this nursing home?

Changes underway at Plaquemine Manor

Copyright 2019 WAFB. All rights reserved.

Created By
Samantha Morgan


Photos provided by Bessie Grainier and WAFB videographer Robert Hollins.

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