‘Nursing home abused my grandmother’
When Anna Marie Campbell placed her grandmother in a St Catherine nursing home, she never imagined that she would return to see a frail, sickly almost unrecognisable woman. Campbell, who resides overseas, told THE STAR that she believed that leaving her grandmother in the care of the nursing home was best for her. But last Friday, when she visited her, she got the shock of her life.
"She went in walking, eating and talking. She was a healthy 71-year-old lady, diabetic but it was under control, she took her tablets, she also had high blood pressure, but she took her tablets. She got very sick this year in March, so they took her to the Kingston Public Hospital (KPH) and she was admitted. The doctor told me that she was malnourished. My grandmother now weighs 25 pounds. It's painful to see her like this," she said.
Campbell said that her grandmother has been at the nursing home for a little more than a year and that seeing the condition she is now in, proves that she is being mistreated. "She lost all her energy and strength because the woman said she was not eating, come to find out the woman was starving my grandmother and collecting $50,000 a month for her payment. My grandmother looked like a dead person," she said.
But Alema Edwards, owner of the nursing home, is disputing the family's allegations. "When we get her, she couldn't walk, mi have to hold her and lead her."
She added that it's not in her business' interest to abuse patients. "The longer dem live a di more money you get - you have the people dem fi a next 10 or 15 years. Weh di sense dem come in today and dead tomorrow?"
Edwards said she has been operating the nursing home for seven years and this is the first time she has ever been accused of mistreating any of her patients. "Sometime she cut down from food, then she eat again. Sometimes all 2 o'clock a night mi haffi get up give her lasco, if she wasn't eating too much in the day. If I wasn't taking care of her, in the condition that I got her, she wouldn't be alive today,"
Campbell said she has since removed her grandmother from the nursing home and that she is now doing much better.
"She's doing well now, she's walking, and she's eating and she's even speaking now.