A resident of a San Mateo care home facility died and two others were hospitalized after they were mistakenly served dishwashing liquid as a drink, according to the facility.
As CBS Bay Area reported, a death investigation has been launched by San Mateo police after reports of a poisoned senior resident at the Atria Hillsdale care home. When officers arrived at the scene on Sunday, they discovered the three individuals had ingested toxic chemicals when they were given soap rather than juice. One of the residents, an unnamed 93-year-old woman, was pronounced dead after she was taken to a nearby hospital. The other two remain hospitalized.
“We can confirm three of our residents were recently transported to the hospital after mistakenly being served dishwashing liquid as drinking juice. We have been working with local authorities, who have informed us that one resident passed away. Our sincerest condolences are with the family,” said the care home in a statement. “When this occurred, our staff immediately contacted authorities, and the residents were transported to the hospital for evaluation and treatment. We are conducting our own internal investigation, and the employees involved have been suspended until this investigation concludes.”
The facility did not explain how the residents were served the soap, but management is cooperating with authorities. “We will continue working with the police and Department of Social Services to fully review and assess the incident, after which we will take additional actions as needed,” the statement continued. “The safety and well-being of our residents remain our top priorities at all times. Out of respect for the people involved, we cannot comment further.”
In addition to the local police, the California Department of Social Services Ombudsman will participate in the investigation.