Two whistleblowers that previously worked for an Aegis Living location in Issaquah, Washington, which is a senior assisted living and memory care facility, have come forward to bring forth allegations of elder abuse and medical fraud.
In a new video from investigative journalism outlet Project Veritas, two former employees of the facility, healthcare insiders Cassandra Renner and Jonathan Schlect, laid out the allegations against the facility. Renner, who worked as a medical technician at Aegis Living, outlined cases of abuse against the patients at the facility, as well as rampant cases of forgery on care documents.
"I came to Project Veritas because I believe that Aegis Living is grossly taking advantage of severely vulnerable adults through fraud on care plans," Renner said.
Renner said that the facility is facing a severe staff shortage, in which "We can probably, on a good day, get about 50% of what these people are paying for done."
"I don't think that the neglect is coming directly from the care managers, as much as it is coming from the facility making the choice to be short-staffed," she said.
Averi Robinson, an associate care director at Aegis Living, said that those remaining in their positions cannot be fired because they physically need the bodies: "The people we do have are there [at Aegis Living] because we need a heartbeat and not because they're actually capable caregivers...They [Aegis Living] literally cannot afford to fire any of us. If we have anything, it's job security."
Renner also told Project Veritas about an incident in which a patient was lied to regarding what vaccine they were receiving. That patient later died.
"I had overheard a chemical restraint being given to one of the residents I worked with in order to get her to take the COVID vaccine…They had given her a PRN, like Xanax, and they were successful after giving her the PRN in order to get her to take the COVID vaccine," Renner said.
"The resident was lied to about what shot she was receiving. She was told that it was the flu shot… She's no longer with us and in her last moments of life, she had to have her dignity removed," Renner added.
Renner said that care plans are based on points, in which residents pay for each point of care. On a resident's activities of daily living (ADL) sheet, Renner noticed that her signature was being forged for care that he did not do, which the resident would then pay for. "In the past I had not signed for certain things that I knew I hadn't completed, and I was told by the ACD [Associate Care Director] who had told me to sign them, that I needed to just sign them anyways. Even if I hadn't completed the task…I noticed the other day, or like a little bit ago that one of my signatures looks like it wasn't mine," she said.
"I had found out that my signature had been forged multiple times. Someone signed for me to claim that I had completed a service that I specifically did not sign because it was not completed," Renner said.
Schlect, who worked as an associate care director, corroborated Renner's statements on forgery of medical documents. "I was told by the care director, Jen, if I didn't [forge signatures], I would be out of compliance with my job and not following her direction, and I'd be written up," Schlect said.
Margie Massa, an associate care director at Aegis, was recorded confirming that she wrote signatures of those who she knew worked that day on ADL categories that were not completed. "If there's not a signature there then that means you didn't do the service. If I knew who worked that day, then I might jot in an initial because I'm kind of saving their asses too. You know?" said Massa.