Horizon Care Center Cited for Accident Hazards

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A nursing home in Arverne, New York has received 15 health code citations in the last four years.

Horizon Care Center has received 15 citations for violations of public health code between 2017 and 2021, according to New York State Department of Health records accessed on May 12, 2021. The Arverne nursing home’s citations resulted from a total of two surveys by state inspectors. The deficiencies they describe include the following:

1. The nursing home did not employ adequate accident-prevention measures. Under Section 483.25 of the Federal Code, nursing homes must provide residents with an environment that remains as free as possible of accident hazards. An October 2019 citation found that Horizon Care Center failed to ensure such. The citation states specifically that after a resident “used an aerosol deodorant spray towards a peer,” the spray “was not immediately removed… to prevent the potential for recurrence.” In an interview, the facility’s Director of Nursing Services said the facility didn’t have any policy concerning “potentially hazardous objects in the resident rooms,” and that upon consideration there was “potential for a future altercation with another resident.” A plan of correction undertaken by the facility included the removal of the aerosol spray and its replacement with stick deodorant.

2. The nursing home did not take adequate steps to prevent infection. Section 483.80 of the Federal Code states that nursing homes are required to prevent the development and transmission of infection by creating and maintaining an infection control program. An October 2019 citation found that Horizon Care Center failed to ensure such. The citation states specifically that the facility did not ensure its Infection Prevention and Control Program was reviewed annually and updated as necessary. In an interview, the facility’s Director of Nursing Services said the facility’s Infection Control and Inservice Coordinator “was in the process of updating the Infection Control Manual.” A plan of correction undertaken by the facility included the review and updating of the Infection Control Manual.

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Among other things, the nursing home was cited for failing to prevent the unnecessary use of psychotropic medications.

3. The nursing home did not prevent the unnecessary use of psychotropic medications. Under Section 483.45 of the Federal Code, nursing homes are required to ensure residents do not receive psychotropic medications unless medically necessary, and that such necessary administrations follow certain protocols. A May 2018 citation found that Horizon Care Center failed to ensure such. The citation states specifically that the facility did not ensure residents taking medication for a redacted condition had a clinical indication for the use of the medication and that they received “gradual dose reductions unless clinically contraindicated.” It goes on to describe more specifically a resident who was put on a medication “twice daily without a proper indication for its use, and continued the medication after a psychiatrist” recommended its discontinuation. A plan of correction undertaken by the facility included the educational counseling of the consulting psychiatrist who ordered the medication.

The attorneys at the Law Offices of Thomas L. Gallivan, PLLC work diligently to protect the rights of nursing home residents.  Please contact us to discuss in the event you have a potential case involving neglect or abuse.

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