Senior care director in Savannah weighs in on CPR refusal - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Savannah senior care director weighs in on CPR refusal

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Jenny House Jenny House

A California nurse refused to give CPR to an 87-year-old woman at an independent living facility, calling 911 instead for help. The woman later died, but the nurse says she was following company protocol. The woman's death is now sparking debate in the healthcare community.

WTOC spoke with Senior Citizens Inc. in Savannah, a non-profit group that provides numerous services for senior citizens across the Coastal Empire. Jenny House, vice president of operations for the group, calls the 911 phone call "horrifying." She did however say that each company that owns a facility can determine their own protocol, which is why it is crucial for residents and loved ones to understand the services provided.

House said independent living facilities might not have any nursing staff at all, while assisted living may have CNA's and a few nurses to monitor residents' medication. Nursing homes are the highest level of senior care, with a full nursing staff.

Still, she said she is shocked by the nurse's decision to not administer CPR, and doesn't understand the logic behind the company's protocol.

"I don't understand it, or the legal ramifications of that, but you would think a nurse would do what they could to help."

The director of Greenwood Gardens in California said in a statement that residents of the facility are well informed of the policy before they move in.

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