The Evangelical Lutheran Good Samaritan Society’s Nursing Homes & Assisted Living Facilities
Good Sam is one of the nation’s largest long term care providers. After its recent merger with Sanford Health, the South Dakota-based senior care corporation is valued at $6 billion with 47,000 employees nationwide.
Despite its nonprofit status, Good Sam nursing homes are still sued in negligence lawsuits and cited by state agency investigators.
If you would like our nursing home abuse attorneys to investigate a potential claim against a Good Samaritan Society nursing home or ALF, call us today at (888) 375-9998 for a free case consultation.
Staffing Deficiencies at the Good Samaritan Society’s Facilities
Nursing home understaffing is a serious problem and can be the root cause of many preventable injuries, like bed sores, patient falls, nursing negligence, and lack of supervision.
Starting at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic and continuing into 2023, U.S. nursing homes have faced unprecedented nursing staff shortages. President Joe Biden and the White House announced in February of 2022 their plans to boost nursing home staffing by setting minimum staffing levels and providing a 25% increase in funding to health and safety inspections.
In August of 2022, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) launched a study to determine the minimum level and type of staffing required to provide safe and adequate nursing care in facilities. CMS plans to issue its recommendations on staffing levels in the Spring of 2023.
In a recent interview on the Good Samaritan Society’s staffing shortages, CEO of the Society, Nathan Schema, said that federal staffing mandates would, “be a death sentence for many of our nursing homes.” In March of 2022, the Good Samaritan Society had nearly 2,500 openings for positions across the country. Schema told interviewers, “Our staffing challenges have been nothing short of extraordinary.”
By October of 2022, The Evangelical Lutheran Good Samaritan Society had to close down ten of their facilities due to staffing shortages. It has been approximated that around 238,000 caregivers have left the nursing home industry since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic. A new survey from the American Health Care Association reports that 98% of nursing homes are having trouble hiring qualified caregivers.
Risks and Injuries Associated with Understaffed Nursing Homes
Effects of understaffing can harm residents. Many residents in care facilities rely on nursing staff for some, if not all, of their care needs. Staffing shortages can lead to vulnerable residents suffering from bedsores, falls, weight loss, depression, infections, and hygiene issues. While most nursing staff try their best to provide quality care to residents, some staff may directly harm residents in cases of physical abuse, verbal abuse, or sexual abuse.
Risks of Understaffing in Nursing Homes
- The development of bedsores, also known as pressure ulcers, due to a resident not being regularly moved by staff.
- Infections being untreated or ignored by staff.
- Resident falls due to improper supervision and the failure to use fall prevention methods.
- Resident drops due to a staff member trying to move a two-person assist resident by themselves.
- Physical, sexual, or verbal abuse aimed towards residents from frustrated staff members.
- Missed medications or meals.
- Poor hygiene due to not being bathed or showered regularly.
If your loved one suffered any of the above injuries, contact Senior Justice Law Firm today to investigate a potential Good Samaritan Society nursing home negligence lawsuit.
Free Case Consultation: (888) 375-9998
Citations of Abuse and Neglect at The Evangelical Lutheran Good Samaritan Society’s Nursing Facilities
Good Samaritan Society Nursing Home in Albert Lea Sued for Nursing Home Abuse
In late 2008, six nursing assistants were arrested for the abuse of residents at the Good Samaritan Society Nursing Home in Albert Lea, MN. Most of the victims involved suffered from Alzheimer’s or dementia. The abuse allegedly occurred between January and May of 2008. The nursing assistants were accused of spitting in residents’ mouths, spraying residents with water, groping their genitals, and verbally harassing them. While the abuse occurred, other residents could hear screams from the victims along with the laughs of the nursing assistants. Four of the nursing assistants were teenagers and tried as juveniles. Two of the nursing assistants were tried as adults. Along with the criminal cases against the offenders, civil lawsuits were filed against The Evangelical Lutheran Good Samaritan Society alleging negligence. Attorneys in the civil lawsuit against Good Sam, described the situation to reporters as, “abuse bordering on torture.” The Good Samaritan Society claimed that they were not aware of the abuse as it was occurring.
Good Samaritan Society – Kissimmee Village in Kissimmee, Florida Cited for Nursing Home Neglect
In September of 2021, approximately 48 hours after being admitted to the facility, a cognitively impaired resident eloped from the building. She exited the facility unsupervised through an exterior exit door. The staff did not notice she was missing until a staff member saw her outside through a window. By the time staff went outside to retrieve her, she had fallen onto the ground. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) investigated the incident and found that the resident had been placed at risk for serious injury due to failures to provide her with adequate supervision.
Good Samaritan Society – Grants Cited for Stage 4 Bed Sore & Elopement from Facility
Good Samaritan Society – Grants in New Mexico has been cited for abuse by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). In October of 2021, a resident died of septic shock after her stage four bedsore became infected at the facility. In December of 2020, a resident was able to elope from the facility’s unlocked front entrance.
Good Samaritan Society – Daytona in Daytona Beach, Florida Investigated for Patient Falls
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) investigated Good Samaritan Society – Daytona in 2020 after a resident sustained more than two falls with major injury in the facility. According to CMS, the resident suffered a hematoma on her right eye, a nasal fracture, and a collarbone fracture as a result of falls out of bed.
Good Samaritan Society – Loveland Village Cited for Bed Sores and Patient Falls
Good Samaritan Society – Loveland Village was cited in November of 2021 by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) for failing to prevent residents from developing bedsores, also known as pressure ulcers. Staff failed to provide an air mattress to offload pressure from a resident who had developed a stage three bedsore in the facility. The resident was dependent on staff for wound care, but the facility failed to timely implement treatments for the wound. Another resident also developed a stage three bedsore in the facility due to lack of adequate care.
Good Samaritan Society – Boise Village Loses Medicare Funding; Closes Down
In late April 2021, the Good Samaritan Society – Boise Village announced that it would be closing its doors and relocating its residents. The closure came after the facility lost funding from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). CMS claimed that the nursing home failed to comply with requirements related to the safety and health of residents for the over seven months. CMS stated that the facility failed to meet standards with quality of care, nursing services, and infection control. The facility officially closed its doors on May 20, 2021.
Lawsuits Against Good Samaritan Nursing Homes Alleging Neglect, Abuse, or Wrongful Death
Good Samaritan Society has faced multiple prior lawsuits alleging nursing home negligence. Below are some prior cases against Good Samaritan facilities.
State of Texas vs. The Evangelical Lutheran Good Samaritan Society
Allegations: The Attorney General brought suit against the Good Samaritan Society seeking civil penalties for violations of the Texas Health and Safety Code. In particular, the Attorney General was focused on one of the Society’s nursing homes: Parks Good Samaritan Village. The case arose after an investigation by the Texas Department of State Health Services (TDHS) at Parks Good Samaritan Village. The investigation found that one resident had died in the facility due to health and safety threats, and other residents were at risk of being injured.
Wrongful Death Estate of Cooper vs. Good Samaritan Society
Allegations: In this New Mexico nursing home negligence case, the Estate of the deceased resident (Clifford Cooper) brought a lawsuit against the Good Samaritan nursing home called Grants Good Samaritan Center. It was alleged that Mr. Cooper suffered a preventable hip fracture and wrongful death.
Iverson on behalf of Butts vs. Evangelical Lutheran Good Samaritan Society
Allegations: In this Minnesota nursing home negligence case against Good Samaritan Society, the plaintiff alleged that four Good Sam staff members were abusive to residents.
Wrongful Death Lawsuit Against Good Samaritan Society Daytona
Allegations: In this 2022 Florida nursing home abuse claim, the Estate of Dalton brought a lawsuit against Good Samaritan society alleging that Good Sam staff failed to assist and/or supervise Mr. Dalton with walking to the bathroom. As a result, it was alleged that Mr. Dalton fell and hit his head. He was diagnosed with a traumatic intraparenchymal hemorrhage at Halifax Hospital and subsequently died on July 25, 2021.
Wrongful Death Case Filed Against Good Samaritan Florida Lutheran
Allegations: The Estate of Butchart filed a lawsuit against Good Sam Florida Lutheran, a Deland, Florida skilled nursing facility. This lawsuit alleged nursing home negligence that resulted in the resident falling from the toilet after being left unassisted in the bathroom.
*Each case is different. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome or indicate an expected outcome on your particular case. The above prior lawsuit information is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice from an attorney. This individual case information above comes from publicly filed allegations gathered from the plaintiff’s complaint. The allegations in the complaint have not been proven true. These cases are not the work of this law firm. The inspection results are provided from public government agency surveys. The state Department of Health conducts a survey of all nursing home facilities at least once every 15 months. The deficiencies listed on this page may have been corrected after the date of the inspection and date of publishing this material. Citations, ratings, statistics, and deficiencies are current as of the date of this post and will change later on. The inspection findings published are not complete. You may find the most up to date information at medicare.gov. This material is not endorsed by the facility noted or by any governmental agency. Speak with an attorney immediately if you believe you have a viable case against a nursing home, assisted living facility, or medical facility.
Background Information on The Evangelical Lutheran Good Samaritan Society
The Evangelical Lutheran Good Samaritan Society, commonly referred to as Good Sam or the Good Samaritan Society, is the ninth largest provider of elder care in the U.S. The Good Samaritan Society has around 166 care facilities spanning across 22 states.
Many Good Sam nursing homes are located in the Midwest, Northwest, and Southwest of the United States. Depending on the location, the organization offers different levels of support, ranging from adult daycare, home health care, hospice care, memory care, skilled nursing, assisted living, and independent living.
In 2019, the Good Samaritan Society became affiliated with Sanford Health, a non-profit health system, to offer a broader range of health services to patients. For Good Sam, this merger was a “lifesaver.” In recent years, the Society has struggled with declining revenue from Medicaid-reimbursed expenses. By combining with Sanford Health, the Good Samaritan Society was able to strengthen their position in the senior living market.
In 2023 it is expected that Sanford Health / Good Samaritan will merge with Ebenezer Senior Living, another large senior living provider.
Religious Affiliations of Good Samaritan Nursing Homes & Assisted Living Facilities
Founded by the Reverend August “Dad” Hoeger, The Evangelical Lutheran Good Samaritan Society began as a religious, charitable, non-profit organization to help those with physical and mental disabilities. Shortly after its founding in 1922, the Good Samaritan Society began offering their services to the elderly as well.
The Society has a church relationship with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ECLA). The agreement between the two organizations is that the Society will remain committed to spreading Christian ideology while the ECLA provides donations and volunteer efforts to the Good Samaritan Society’s facilities. The Evangelical Lutheran Good Samaritan Society is not owned or operated by the ECLA and functions separately.
The Society requires facility administrators and other leaders in the corporation to be active members of a Christian church, however, they are not required to attend a Lutheran church. It is not mandatory for lower-level employees to be Christian, although it is encouraged. Many, if not all, of Good Sam’s care facilities have clergy and leaders from Christian denominations provide spiritual ministry. While the organization is a Christian-based one, residents and patients of the Good Samaritan Society do not have to be Christian. The Society is open to all faiths and belief systems.
Good Samaritan Society – Kissimmee Village Demands Rent from Displaced Residents
Hurricane Ian was a destructive Category 4 hurricane- the deadliest hurricane to hit Florida since 1935. Hurricane Ian made landfall on the West Coast of Florida in late September 2022. Due to the storm’s strength and projected path, Osceola County placed an evacuation order for residents in the Good Samaritan Society – Kissimmee. Residents were displaced across the state until the evacuation order was lifted on October 24th, 2022.
When residents returned to the campus, they found their facilities flooded, without power, and unsafe. Just a few days after the campus reopened, the Good Sam Society began demanding payments from residents. Residents became frustrated because they were being asked to pay for their living quarters that had been destroyed from the storm.
Resident Miguel Velez told Fox 35 Orlando, “If Good Samaritan would’ve dealt with us in good faith and say, ‘Listen, we’re going to help these people out,’ with soup, food, water, clothing – then maybe they wouldn’t be looked at the way they’re looked at, because they did nothing.” Furthermore, amongst the damage, residents found one of their own dead in the flood waters. Good Samaritan representatives told Fox 35 Orlando that the company is working with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to make sure this level of damage and loss does not occur again.
Do I Have a Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Case vs. The Good Samaritan Society?
While there is no definitive list of injuries which justify a lawsuit against the Good Samaritan Society, there are some common injuries we see that suggest abuse and/or neglect occurred at a facility.
Common Injuries Resulting in a Lawsuit:
- Bedsores, also known as pressure ulcers (Stage 3, 4 or Unstageable)
- Elopement, also known as resident wandering
- Severe dehydration and/or malnutrition
- Falls resulting in fractures, broken bones, or brain bleeds
- Sexual assault and/or rape
- Physical abuse such as punching, pushing, or kicking
- Sudden wrongful death
- Untreated infections like pneumonia, UTIs (urinary tract infections), sepsis, etc.
No amount of money won from a settlement will undo the damage done to yourself or loved one. But, by filing a lawsuit against the company, you can ensure that the corporation learns from its mistakes. Lawsuits can lead to elder care companies implementing higher quality training for their nursing staff and updating its internal policies and procedures to try to prevent an incident from occurring again.
Free Case Consultation
At Senior Justice Law Firm, our focus is on representing victims and their families who have been abused or neglected at care facilities. Our team of attorneys have a combined 50+ years of experience pursuing justice for victims of nursing home abuse and neglect.
If you or a loved one has been injured at a facility owned by The Evangelical Lutheran Good Samaritan Society or another long term care facility, please give us a call today at 888-375-9998.
We provide completely free case consultations and we never require any out of pocket payment from you. We work exclusively on contingency fee, which means we only get paid if your family makes a recovery on your case.
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