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Facility held mom: Daughter

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An official at the facility said the release was delayed because the family had not hired adequate care for the woman to go home.Marlyn Bond said she admitted her mother to the Holliswood Care Center located at 195-44 Woodhull Ave. in Hollis, in March after she was hospitalized for a medical problem that caused her feet to swell. Two months later she tried to have her mother, whom she did not want to identify by name, released from the facility into her personal care, but her request was denied by administrators."I did everything they told me and they told me that I could not take her home. They said that I had to have 24-hour nurses in place but I did," Bond said in a telephone interview this week.Holliswood Care Center's staff said they did not release Bond's mother because they thought the care to be provided by Bond was not adequate to treat her mother."The only way the person can be discharged is if there is proper care for the individual. There was nothing at home to make it safe for her," said Joe Zimiles, the administrator for Holliswood Care Center.Bond, who lives in Hollis, said her nurse was certified by New York state and she called Albany to confirm it, but the care center refused to let her go. Bond's lawyer, Lori Somekh, called Holliswood Care Center's actions unethical."We view this as a case of unlawful imprisonment and we're disturbed that a nursing home that's supposed to protect elderly people takes advantage of them," she said. "They don't get to decide what type of home care is in place for her."Holliswood Care Center is a 314-bed facility that offers many medical services for its clients, including short- and long-term rehabilitation for surgery and injuries, and nursing care. The privately owned center, which has been operating for more than 30 years, according to Zimiles, has had two state health citations issued against it in the last two years, one for quality of care and other for resident rights, according to the New York State's Department of Health's database.In New York state the average number of citations per 100 beds is one, according to the DOH.During her stay at the home, Somekh and Zimiles said Bond's mother suffered a fall from her wheelchair. Her injuries were not serious and did not prolong her stay, according to the Holliswood Care Center.Bond and her family tried several times to get her mother discharged, but the nursing home would not let her take her mother home, Somekh said. In October, the center filed a guardianship petition asking the Queens Civil Court to declare that she was incapacitated and needed care, which was not true, according to Bond's attorney.As part of the hearing, the court sent a representative to investigate the situation and found discrepancies between Holliswood's account and medical records, according to Bond."The judge sent their own lawyer to Holliswood to evaluate the situation and she sent in a report. That lawyer told me to get my own attorney, which I did immediately," Bond said.In November the judge ordered Holliswood Care Center to release Bond's mother and she returned home. Bond said that although her mother is doing better at home under the care of aides, she is considering suing the center for the extended stay."I'm disgusted because it hurt my mother and it hurt me. They held her against her will," she said.Holliswood Care Center officials reiterated that they did not do anything illegal or harm Bond's mother."There was no problem. NYS Department of Health and the police said we did the proper way and she's home now," Zimiles said.Reach reporter Ivan Pereira by e-mail at ipereira@timesledger.com or by phone at 718-229-0300, Ext. 146.

Updated 6:57 pm, October 10, 2011
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