Legal Loophole Puts Florida Nursing Home Patients At Risk
According to media reports, Falo Kane, a certified nursing assistant who admitted to sexually abusing six elderly women in his care at four Pinellas County health care facilities, was able to continue working due to a legal loophole. Despite being previously arrested multiple times for sexual abuse, Kane was not only allowed to keep his license…it wasn’t even publicly flagged.
Florida Law states that licensed health care practitioners are required to report all sexual abuse allegations to the Department of Health. Kane’s file, however, only noted multiple complaints made against him dating back to 2016. In an email from Florida Department of the Health (FDOH), a spokesperson said that while the statute requires reporting an allegation, it also states that unless or until probable cause is found regarding a complaint, then that complaint to the Department of Health never becomes public record – even if an arrest is made.
Kane ultimately admitted to sexually battering two elderly women in 2016, and four more in March, August and September of 2019. According to the arrest reports, he preyed on patients, attacking the elderly women while in their most vulnerable states. His record was clean because, even while he was under investigation for multiple allegations: “An arrest or waiting for trial is not evidence of wrongdoing and our statues recognize this by providing that only a conviction or plea is actionable.”
In December 2019, Kane’s license was finally revoked by the board. Kane passed multiple employment background checks because his plea didn’t show up because of a loophole in the law. In 2018, Kane was charged under a certain section that would only flag him if his crime included a minor. If he had been charged under different sections which included a disabled adult, his plea would have been flagged.
Facilities in which Kane has sexually assaulted patients include Mease Countryside Hospital, Advanced Care Center, Clearwater Center, Comprehensive Health Care Facility and Glen Oaks Health and Rehabilitation Center.
Healthcare facilities have an obligation to make sure their providers are helping, not harming their patients. Someone who sexually violates elderly people has no place working in the nursing field. Any facility in which such a crime is committed must take responsibility for failing to properly screen potential employees and protect its patients.
Horowitz Law represents victims who were sexually abused in healthcare facilities. If you or a loved one was sexually abused, raped or sexually molested by a certified nursing assistant, nurse, doctor or health care practitioner or administator, contact our law firm at 888-283-9922 or send an e-mail to sexual abuse lawyer Adam Horowitz at [email protected] for a free consultation.