The state Department of Health and state Office of the Attorney General are investigating an incident at the Thompson Health nursing home involving Snapchat. The probe centers on nursing home employees involved in sharing multimedia images and/or messages of a resident via Snapchat at Thompson’s M.M. Ewing Continuing Care Center in Canandaigua.
Snapchat mobile app allows users to share photos, video or messages known as “snaps” with a list of contacts.
At the attorney general’s office, Deputy Press Secretary Rachel Shippee confirmed the investigation. “The Medicaid Fraud Control Unit’s mission includes the protection of nursing home residents from abuse, neglect and mistreatment, including acts that violate a resident’s rights to dignity and privacy,” she stated in response to inquiry from the Messenger after receiving two anonymous tips.
“We are investigating concerns related to this incident at FF Thompson Continuing Care,” stated Jeffrey Hammond, public information officer at the health department. “Ensuring the well-being of all nursing home residents is of the utmost importance of the state health department,” stated Hammond. “We are investigating concerns related to this incident at FF Thompson Continuing Care. As this is an ongoing investigation, we cannot comment further.”
Two people who called the Messenger and identified themselves as employees of Continuing Care said they are disturbed by the use of Snapchat in the nursing home. Both spoke on condition of anonymity saying they were afraid of repercussions because they had been told not to talk.