Nightingale Nursing Home fined $15k for abusing elderly patient

SINGAPORE - In the first case of its kind, the nursing home accused of mistreating an elderly patient has been fined $15,000 for failing to ensure an approved level of care in its nursing practices.

The case first came to light when Madam Peh Siew Lay's son installed a camera-clock beside her bed, which subsequently recorded her being tossed onto the bed by two of Nightingale Nursing Home's staff and another slapping her on the mouth.

The nursing home was fined another $11,000 for illegally deploying their foreign worker nursing aides as food and drink sellers, cheerleaders and security personnel at Toa Payoh Stadium during football games.

Its sister organisation, Greenview Nursing Home under the Nightingale Group, was also fined $6,500 on similar charges of illegal deployment.

In addition, Civic Ambulance Services, also under the Nightingale Group, was fined $20,000 for falsely declaring the salaries of its foreign staff.

Nightingale's director Tan Choo Waoh, 64, was fined $12,000 for requiring workers to work more than the statutory eight hours per day when signing their employment contracts and for not paying them for overtime work in June 2010.

District Judge Hamidah Ibrahim said the heavy sentence was to send a message to nursing home operators that the law has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to the inappropriate treatment of elderly patients.

yamadak@sph.com.sg

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