A personal care home in Altoona is under investigation for allegedly neglecting a resident who died last month, court records reveal.
Agents from the state Attorney General's Office executed a search warrant late last month seeking records from Warner's Home for the Aged, 1100 14th Ave., a personal care home that had 19 residents as of August, according to the State Department of Public Welfare.
The resident at the center of the investigation, who had lived at Warner's since February, died nearly two weeks after he was taken to the Altoona Regional Health System, Altoona Hospital Campus, emergency room after falling out of bed, court records reflect.
State investigators allege in the search warrant application that an autopsy's findings "were consistent with an individual who was neglected by his caretakers."
Sherry Warner, the home's administrator and owner, declined comment on the investigation. As of Tuesday, no criminal charges have been filed in the matter. AG agents searched her home at 2030 Riggles Gap Road, Altoona, last month for records and other evidence.
According to the search warrant, approved by Magisterial District Judge Fred B. Miller on Nov. 22, agents from the Attorney General's Medicaid Fraud Control Section were contacted on Nov. 10 by Blair Senior Services after an 80-year-old man living at Warner's was taken to the emergency room.
The hospital's staff had reported the man appeared "in very poor health," was "severely dehydrated, suffering from sepsis and had feces covering much of his body, including his hands and face," the affidavit of probable cause attached to the search warrant application noted.
The resident also suffered "numerous" bed sores on all of his toes, his shins and hips, as well as prematurely dead tissue on one foot, and several of the bed sores were covered with urine-soaked bandages, Special Agent Jennifer E. Snerr points out in the document.
The investigation has included interviews with Warner and other staff members, the warrant shows. One worker allegedly told investigators that the third-shift "direct care aide" was known to "often yell at the residents and openly admits she doesn't like her job" and that first-shift workers "consistently" found the man and his roommate drenched in urine, according to the affidavit.
Pathologist Dr. Harry Kamerow conducted an autopsy with agents from the Attorney General's Office present. Investigators noted Kamerow described the man as being in a "state of ill health" with "malnutrition and wasting" and that he had "pneumonia consistent with a patient who has been confined to bed."
Nils Frederiksen, spokesman for the Attorney General's Office, said he could neither confirm nor deny the investigation.