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Takedown of 80 year old, Villa Caritas

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August 30, 2011

Minister of Health & Wellness, the Honorable Gene Zwozdesky

Complaints Manager, College of Physicians and Surgeons
2700 Telus Plaza South, 10020 100th Street

Edmonton, AB. T5J 0N3

Solicitor General & Minister of Public Security,Honourable Frank Oberle
Legislature Building, Edmonton, AB.


COMPLAINT re. Dr. Kevin Lawless, Psychiatrist,
Geriatric unit, Villa Caritas,
16515 88 Avenue, Edmonton, AB. T5R 0A4

Dr. Kevin Lawless authorized and essentially ordered the takedown of 80 year old Mrs. M.G. at Villa Caritas, Edmonton, AB.

There is a BARBARIC PROTOCOL carried out in psychiatric hospitals and hospital
psychiatric units known as a “takedown”.

The protocol of the ‘takedown’ is as follows:
1) A psychiatrist / physician enters Orders in the patient file as follows:

a. May restrain

b. PRN Orders for intramuscular sedatives / anti psychotic injections.

c. May be placed in ”QUIET ROOM” (quiet room is furnished with only a mattress).

These Orders give ordinary ward staff FULL AUTHORITY, to at any time, initiate
a process known as a takedown.

On August 26, 2011 @ 4:55 PM, Nadine, charge nurse, (surname unknown, professional status unknown) Unit 2 (A) Villa Caritas, initiated a takedown on an
80 year old patient, M.G..

It was the THIRD KNOWN takedown of this elderly
lady in a period of less than four weeks.

Mrs. G. had been complaining to staff that someone was taking her belongings.

Nadine, called security guard John to Unit 2 # A. Then John, Nadine and an aide,
seized the elderly lady,
and placed her on her walker. The nursing attendant
held her against the walker not allowing her to escape.

John and Nadine, each holding an arm, bent the arms forward holding them in place
by tightly bending forward her hands and wrists.
This is a very painful process.

We have been told that it feels as if your wrists would break. In this instance,
this is what happened to Mrs. G., her bone(s) was broken.

Patients heard the
“CRACK” as the fracture took place.
Nevertheless, the perpetrators proceeded with the takedown.

As usual, there
was a lot of hollering by staff throughout the ordeal /process. Nadine gave
the injection/needle (drug) and within an hour another injection. Apparently,
during the second injection, the senior hardly complained, only moaned slightly.
Mrs. G. was taken to the quiet room and then removed again.

She did not have
supper that evening.

The next morning, she was brought to breakfast in a wheel chair.

Normally she
is independently mobile. Can one imagine the pain she was feeling from the
fractured arm? There is also marked bruising on her upper and lower arms. Ward
Charge nurse, Patrick Hartnett RN, DID NOT send her to the Misericordia Hospital
emergency unit for care until later that morning. A cast was applied to her right
On August 5, 2011, Ridwan Musa, RPN, called security guard, Mark and initiated a
of this same senior for allegedly banging her door. Ridwan and security
guard, Mark, held shut her door, all the time HOLLERING at her THROUGH THE DOOR.

During that takedown, the phone lines were shut off so patients
COULD NOT CALL OUT and allow the public to hear the hollering and uproar.
Does the staff holler to drown out the elder’s cry of pain?
Nurse Nadine had also initiated a takedown of Mrs. G. on July 31, 2011.
Mrs. G. had told staff:


Staff in mental wards and hospitals do not tolerate back talk.
Despite the harm and serious injury caused to Mrs. G. by Nadine, John,
and other staff on August 26th, 2011, the following evening, August 27, 2011,
Nadine and John carried out a takedown on Eva, who is daily and almost
continuously restrained in a chair. Eva is restrained with a T strap across
abdomen and legs
which frequently is uncomfortably tight which causes her to
complain. She can’t go anywhere. She cannot carry out any movement. Her feet
are hanging down and swollen.
Sometimes she wails in total distress.
Eva was mobile when she entered Alberta hospital but is being disabled because
she is being continuously restrained in a chair. Nevertheless, these two
brave individuals carried out a “takedown”. It was reported to
us that Eva was given three needles.
We strongly suggest that there are more effective, ethical, compassionate ways to
care for WALKER DEPENDENT, WHEEL CHAIR DEPENDENT, elderly seniors than by
assaulting them.


We CHALLENGE the professionals who are responsible for the violence which is being
perpetrated against vulnerable persons, persons who are being detained behind
LOCKED doors of Villa Caritas and Alberta Hospital Edmonton.

We ask that the entire matter of the takedowns of Mrs. G. & resulting injury/s
be investigated and addressed.
We submit that “takedowns” constitute assault, that this matter be addressed
accordingly and the criminal code applied.

Yours truly

c.c. Honourable Minister of Seniors, Ms. Mari Anne Jablonski
Honourable Ray Danyluk, MLA Lac La Biche

October 7, 2011

Attention: Hearing Director, Ms. Cathy McCann
College of Physicians and Surgeons

APPEAL Re: COMPLAINT – Dr. Kevin Lawless, Psychiatrist, Assistant Clinical Director,
Geriatric unit, Villa Caritas / Alberta Hospital 16515 88 Ave Edmonton.
Further to your correspondence of September 16, 2011.

1) YOUR REASON FOR DISMISSAL states that our allegations are VAGUE.

We submit that we carefully detailed times and place. We named the
We carefully described the protocol:
“The nursing attendant held her (80 yr. old Mrs. G.) against the walker
not allowing her to escape. John and Nadine, each holding an arm, bent the
arms forward holding them in place by tightly bending forward her hands and
wrists” (until one arm CRACKED).
We cited the hollering and shouting of staff which accompanies takedowns
(which we believe is intended to drown out the senior’s cries of terror and pain).

2) You state that the physician’s Order DOES NOT constitute unprofessional conduct.
Is the College suggesting that it was appropriate, ethical, compassionate protocol
that was carried out again and again under the direction and full knowledge of
Dr. Kevin Lawless?

Dr. Lawless made

1) the Clinical decision

2) deliberately wrote an Order detailing
protocol for the treatment of Mrs. G.
Dr. Lawless, a long time professional at Alberta Hospital Edmonton must surely have
understood what his order meant when put into practice by hospital staff. As Assistant
Clinical Director he must also be fully knowledgeable about the status of the elderly
clientele of Villa Caritas, Unit 2 A.

Dr. Lawless, must also have understood that his Clinical Decision would be carried
out in large part by untrained persons hired off the street.
Security officers
are not employees of Alberta Health Services but are contracted
persons. The written Order of Dr. Lawless, gave direction to staff of Villa Caritas,
who may or may not have taken any studies in gerontology together with personnel such
as aides and security guards.

We submit that takedowns may be appropriate in a maximum security prison to control
hardened criminals but unacceptable on a Geriatric ward of frail, elderly OSTEOPOROSIS
PRONE persons. Many of these elderly cannot even fully comprehend what is being done
to them and why.

Dr. Lawless, Patrick Hartnett RN & nursing staff did not immediately send Mrs. G. to
Misericordia Hospital. Ward staff heard the bone crack! Why did they wait until next day,
midmorning? We suppose she needed breakfast. After all, this elder hadn’t had a meal
since noon the day before.

    We find it troubling that the College of Physicians and Surgeons have not referred
    this matter to the Edmonton Police Service for investigation.

    We find it further troubling that physicians of the Misericordia Hospital FAILED TO REPORT
    the injury to the EDMONTON POLICE SERVICE or at least to the PROTECTION FOR PERSONS IN CARE.


Furthermore, it would seem that both persons, the RN and the security guard have not been disciplined or even cautioned. The evening, following the fractured arm incident,

hapless senior WAS ASSAULTED in a takedown by the same two persons.


    We submit that violently restraining and harming a vulnerable, elderly person constitutes

    Those who condone assault, deserve to be sanctioned.

    Yours truly,

    Edmonton Chief of Police, Mr. Rod Knecht
    Honourable Minister of Health, & Wellness, Mr. Gene Zwozdesky
    Ms. Sue Chandler, College & Association of Registered Nurses.



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