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Nursing Home Responsible for Elderly Woman's Death

DHEC report states Majesty Health and Rehab bears responsibility for death of Eloise Arnold.

A report from the Department of Health and Environmental Control said several deficiencies on the part of Majesty Health and Rehab lead to an Easley woman's death.

On June 30, Eloise Arnold, 84, was found unresponsive at the Easley facility. The day also was one of the hottest days of the year.

Arnold was transported to Baptist Easley, where she was pronounced dead.

Coroner Kandy Kelley said at the time that Arnold's death was possibly heat related.

The report, issued last month by DHEC, said that Majesty Health and Rehab was at fault in a number of areas.

The facility failed to quickly notify the resident, her doctor and family members of the situation effecting the resident.

According to the report, statements from nine staff members, one family member, the county coroner and four residents residing on Arnold's wing of the facility confirmed that the heat was extreme in the afternoon and into the evening on June 30.

Air conditioning had broken down in one wing of the facility prior to Arnold's death. The report stated that temperatures in one resident's room had reached 90 degrees and staff members were using wet towels to keep him cool.

Police were called to the facility June 30, after receiving a call that portions of the facility had been under extreme heat conditions for two weeks.

A police officer who arrived on the scene checked all affected residents' rooms.

“(The officer)stuck his hand up at every air vent in the ceiling to see how much air was exiting through the vent,” the report states. “There was little to no air flow."

The report stated that “substandard quality of care” was found at the facility on June 30 and that the facility had failed to “ensure that each resident was provided the necessary goods and services to maintain a comfortable and safe living environment.”

“The facility failed to maintain safe and comfortable ambient temperature levels for the dining room, 8 resident rooms and the hallway adjacent to the 8 rooms on Unit 3,” the report states.

According to the report, the facility's administrator and Regional Vice President were made aware that heat was extreme in Unit 3 on June 29.

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