River Bluff Nursing Home Whistle Blower

By: Rebecca Burlette
By: Rebecca Burlette

Abuse and neglect, one former employee of River Bluff Nursing Home says she’s witnessed both first hand.
Now she's asking Winnebago County Board Members to call on an investigation.
Diane Bergquist says in her two years as an admissions coordinator she’s witnessed patients being both mentally and physically abused numerous times.
“I witnessed personally one CNA who was extremely rough with one of the residents.” said Bergquist.
And the alleged abuse didn't stop there. Bergquist claims to have witnessed one elderly patient screaming for help only to be ignored.
“She was having obvious difficultly breathing. And her oxygen tube was wrapped around her wheelchair and there were two nurses sitting down at the desk and neither one of them raised an eye.” claimed Bergquist.
Bergquist says she complained many times but was forced to go through a number of people before her claims could be heard by the state. By then it was too late.
“By the time state gets it the next day there's something covered up and that’s happened many times." said Bergquist.
River Bluffs administrator Phyllis Schwebke admits things do happen but denies any cover-ups.
“There is certainly some truth to each but the implication that nothing was done is inaccurate." said Schwebke.
Schwebke says all serious allegations are investigated and reported. For now Bergquist hopes the Winnebago County Board will investigate and make changes.

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