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HarmarVillage Care Center sanctioned for leaving woman alone who died in fall

| Friday, May 19, 2017, 11:00 p.m.

The state Health Department has sanctioned a Harmar nursing home in relation to a resident's death from a fall.

HarmarVillage Care Center is operating on a six-month provisional license as it puts in place new measures to prevent falls following the Feb. 17 death, according to a Health Department inspection report and correction plan. The department sanctioned the nursing home April 26.

The woman fell while she was alone in the bathroom, despite instructions from a doctor that she should not be left unattended in the bathroom, according to the inspection report.

A nurse's aide was in the room when the woman went to the bathroom, but had left her to turn off a bed alarm, according to the report.

The nurse's aide said he was not aware of the order not to leave the woman unattended, despite having access to digital records of care plans for all residents, the report states.

The correction plan says the facility will increase education and training to prevent falls and will create care sheets for each resident that are updated daily.

HarmarVillage officials could not be reached for comment.

Fines can accompany the license sanctions, but the Health Department focuses on the improvements first before issuing fines, a spokeswoman said.

The department did not identify the woman, but the inspection report references a medical examiner's report on the woman's death from 7:57 a.m., Feb. 17.

An Allegheny County Medical Examiner's Office report from the same date and time states Delores Cerutti, 83, of Cheswick died from blunt force head trauma from a fall at an address on the same block as HarmarVillage.

A complaint led to the inspection, according to the inspection report.

The Health Department conducts unannounced inspections as part of its process for issuing annual licenses, the spokeswoman said. Provisional licenses are for shorter time periods.

Wes Venteicher is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 412-380-5676, or via Twitter @wesventeicher.

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