Nebraska hospital apologizes for moving patient to skilled nursing facility without family's OK

An Omaha, Neb., hospital has apologized after making an important care decision about a 92-year-old dementia patient without the consent of his family, NBC-affiliate TV station WOWT reported.

Mark Broin said he wanted his father Dean transferred from CHI Health Creighton University Medical Center-Bergan Mercy to a skilled nursing facility, but not when the hospital only left a voicemail notice saying that his father would be transferred while Mr. Broin was out of town.

A call from the facility alerted Mark's wife, Norma Broin, who demanded Bergan Mercy stop the transfer.

"I told the nurse, social worker and the doctor, so I told three different lines don't do it, don't do it, and they did it," Ms. Broin said.

The couple has power of attorney for Dean and brought him back to Bergan Mercy's emergency room. After six more days at Bergan Mercy, Dean was transferred to the skilled nursing facility after the family screened and approved it.

CHI Health offered an apology to Dean and his family.

"Due to a misunderstanding, CHI Health transferred a patient to a skilled nursing facility, not a hospital, to continue his care," CHI officials told WOWT. "We have reviewed our communication protocol and made changes to make sure we have a clearer communication plan and this doesn't happen again. We apologize to the patient and the family."

The Broin family said they hope CHI Health will be careful to include family in decisions patients cannot make for themselves.

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