Articles Posted in COVID-19

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The nursing home in Buffalo, New York has received $30,000 in fines.

Buffalo Center for Rehabilitation and Nursing has received 126 citations for violations of public health code between 2017 and 2021, according to New York State Department of Health records accessed on April 30, 2021. The facility has additionally received three fines totaling $30,000 since 2008. The Buffalo nursing home’s citations resulted from a total of 15 surveys by state inspectors. The deficiencies they describe include the following: Continue reading

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A nursing home in Oswego, New York has received $46,000 in fines since 2013.

Pontiac Nursing Home has received 37 citations for violations of public health code between 2017 and 2021, according to New York State Department of Health records accessed on April 30, 2021. The facility has additionally received three fines totaling $46,000 since 2013. The Oswego nursing home’s citations resulted from a total of six surveys by state inspectors. The deficiencies they describe include the following: Continue reading

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New data reveals that US nursing homes were understaffed during the height of the pandemic this past winter.

Last week the Long Term Community Care Coalition published fourth-quarter 2020 staffing data for every nursing home in the United States. Noting that staffing levels in nursing homes “have played a critical role in determining the health outcomes of nursing home residents during the COVID-19 pandemic,” the LTCCC argues that nursing homes with adequate staffing levels are better positioned to mitigate transmission of Covid-19, treat residents with the disease, and prevent the pandemic’s psychological side effects with a level of resident care that helps stave off isolation. Continue reading

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Lawmakers in the House and Senate are examining whether nursing homes are spending enough money on resident care.

A recent column in the Washington Post argued that the Covid-19 pandemic revealed dire problems in nursing home facilities across the country. The column’s author, Syracuse University law professor Nina Kohn, wrote that these systemic problems, which include understaffing and poor quality of care for nursing home residents, stem in part from “owners who place profit-seeking above their residents’ welfare.” While policymakers have turned their eye towards solutions to the structural flaws in nursing homes, Kohn states that a more concerted effort is necessary to create safer, fairer elder care in the United States. Continue reading

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The nursing home in Williamsville, New York has received 115 citations since 2017.

Comprehensive Rehab and Nursing Center at Williamsville has received 115 citations for violations of public health code between 2017 and 2021, according to health records accessed on April 21, 2021. It has also received seven fines totaling $79,000 since 2011. The Williamsville nursing home’s citations resulted from a total of 11 inspections by state surveyors. The violations they describe include the following:

1. The nursing home did not adequately prevent infection. Section 483.80 of the Federal Code requires nursing homes to establish and maintain an infection prevention and control program. A May 2020 citation found that Comprehensive Rehab and Nursing Center at Williamsville failed to ensure such. The citation states specifically that the facility “did not establish and maintain an Infection Control Program to ensure the health and safety of residents to help prevent the transmission of COVID-19.” It goes on to describe the nursing home’s failure to practice social distancing in two units, its failure to assess residents for “signs and symptoms of COVID-19,” and a “lack of proper hand hygiene” in connection to three residents. The citation states that these deficiencies had the “potential to cause more than minimal harm.” Continue reading

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The nursing home in Syracuse, New York was cited for findings of improper PPE use during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Bishop Rehabilitation and Nursing Center has received 75 citations for violations of public health code between 2017 and 2021, according to health records accessed on April 16, 2021. The Syracuse nursing home’s citations resulted from a total of 15 inspections by state surveyors. The violations they describe include the following:

1. The nursing home did not take adequate steps to prevent infection. Section 483.80 of the Federal Code requires nursing homes to create and maintain an infection control program designed to prevent infection. A September 2020 citation found that Bishop Rehabilitation and Nursing Center failed to ensure such. The citation states specifically that the nursing home two registered nurses and a licensed practical nurse “were observed wearing face masks below their noses” while treating a resident, and that a unit aide was observed “wearing a face mask below her nose and mouth while sitting with 2 residents and speaking with another staff member,” in contravention of the facility’s guidelines concerning the use of personal protective equipment. A plan of correction undertaken by the facility included the re-education of relevant staff.

Creekview Nursing and Rehab Center received 119 citations for violations of public health laws between 2017 and 2021, according to New York State Department of Health records accessed on April 1, 2021. The facility has also received seven fines since 2013, totaling $62,000, over findings of health code violations. The Rochester nursing home’s citations resulted from a total of 13 inspections by state surveyors. The deficiencies they describe include the following:

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In addition to infection control lapses, the New York nursing home was also cited for medication errors.

1. The nursing home did not provide an adequate level of care for pressure ulcers. Section 483.25 of the Federal Code stipulates that nursing homes must ensure residents with pressure ulcers receive necessary treatment and services to promote healing and prevent infection. An October 2020 citation found that Creekview Nursing and Rehab Center failed to ensure such. The citation states specifically that one resident’s pressure ulcer and skin “were not properly cleaned,” that “the correct dressing was not applied,” and that “the resident was not repositioned as care planned.” A plan of correction undertaken by the facility included the counseling of the Licensed Practical Nurse who completed the care, as well as Certified Nursing Assistants who cared for the resident.

The Grand Rehabilitation and Nursing at Mohawk received 44 citations for violations of public health laws between 2017 and 2021, according to New York State Department of Health records accessed on April 1, 2021. The facility has also received three fines since 2019, totaling $22,000, over findings of health code violations. The Ilion nursing home’s citations resulted from a total of 10 inspections by state surveyors. The deficiencies they describe include the following:

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The nursing home in New York was also cited for medication errors.

1. The nursing home did not employ adequate measures to control infection. Section 483.80 of the Federal Code stipulates that nursing homes must help prevent the transmission of communicable diseases and infections by creating and upholding an infection control program. A December 2020 citation found that The Grand Rehabilitation and Nursing at Mohawk failed to ensure such. The citation states specifically that two Certified Nursing Aides “tested positive for COVID-19 and returned to work” before completing a 14-day quarantine and receiving negative PCR tests. Guidance at the time held that nursing home employees who test positive and remain asymptomatic were not eligible to return to work for 14 days from their positive result, while symptomatic employees were required to wait 14 days plus 3 days since the resolution of fever. The citation states that this deficiency had the “potential to cause more than minimal harm.”

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New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has not yet indicated whether he will sign the nursing home immunity legislation.

Last week New York state legislators repealed immunity protections granted to nursing homes earlier this year. On March 26th, the Journal News reported, the New York Senate “voted unanimously to approve legislation that would repeal the Emergency Disaster Treatment Protection Act, which provides immunity to health care providers from potential liability arising from certain decisions, actions and omissions related to the care of people during the COVID-19 pandemic.” The repeal legislation was sponsored by Senator Alessandra Biaggi and co-sponsored by Senators Leroy Comrie, Julia Salazar, and Jessica Ramoz.

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The US Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York is overseeing the nursing home data inquiry.

A new report by the New York Times details the federal investigation into whether New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and his aides “provided false data” to the US Justice Department about resident deaths at the state’s nursing homes. According to the report, FBI agents have interviewed New York Health Department officials and issued subpoenas to Governor Cuomo’s offices for “documents related to the disclosure of data last year.” The investigation remains ongoing.

Federal investigators have questioned officials about data submitted to the federal government regarding Covid-19 case rates and death rates in New York nursing homes, conducting interviews in person and over the phone, per the Times report. The investigation may “add to the legal pressure faced by Mr. Cuomo, as well as by his most senior aides,” it states. Continue reading

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