The Five Towns Premier Rehabilitation & Nursing Center Fined $58,000

The Five Towns Premier Rehabilitation & Nursing Center received 28 citations for violations of public health code between 2016 and 2020, according to New York State Department of Health records accessed on March 17, 2020. The facility has also received five fines between 2013 and 2019, totaling $58,000, for findings that it violated health code provisions concerning accidents, administration, quality of care, and more. The Woodmere nursing home’s citations resulted from a total of seven surveys by state inspectors. The deficiencies they describe include the following:

1. The nursing home did not provide adequate treatment and care for residents with pressure ulcers. Section 483.25 of the Federal Code requires nursing homes to provide residents without pressure ulcers necessary care to prevent pressure ulcers from developing unless unavoidable, and residents with pressure ulcers the necessary care to promote healing, prevent infection, and prevent the development of new ulcers. An October 2018 citation found that The Five Towns Premier Rehabilitation & Nursing Center did not provide such for two residents. The citation states specifically that a resident who was at moderate risk of developing a pressure ulcer developed two ulcers after admission, and that their wounds “were not promptly identified, reported, assessed and monitored, and treatments were not implemented as per the physician’s orders.” As for the other resident, the citation states that they had a stage 4 pressure ulcer, but a physician’s recommendation that they be hospitalized for debridement of the wound was not addressed, resulting in harm to the resident.

2. The nursing home did not ensure residents were protected from significant medication errors. Section 483.45 of the Federal Code requires nursing homes to ensure residents’ are kept “free of any significant medication errors.” An October 2018 citation found that The Five Towns Premier Rehabilitation & Nursing Center did not ensure such for one resident. The citation found specifically that a Licensed Practical Nurse administered an ear medication to the resident’s eye. Later, the resident “complained of mild irritation to the eyes” and “was noted with redness to the eyes.” In an interview, the LPN said that while administering the drug she was “distracted because she was conversing with the [resident’s] family member.” A plan of correction undertaken by the facility included the educational counseling of the LPN.

3. The nursing home did not ensure the adequate provision of respiratory care. Section 483.25 of the Federal Code requires nursing homes to provide residents who need respiratory care with such in a manner that is “consistent with professional standards of practices.” A May 2019 citation found that The Five Towns Premier Rehabilitation & Nursing Center did provide such for one resident. The citation states specifically that the facility did not “implement its system for a prompt response to ventilator alarms,” that staff did not monitor and/or respond to the alarm system’s functional components, that the system designed to alert staff of ventilator alarms was not functioning consistently, and that the facility had no system “for preventative maintenance of the Integrated Nurse Call System.” As such, according to the citation, when a resident triggered their ventilator alarm “for at least five minutes,” multiple staff did not respond, and the resident was later found unresponsive with no pulse or respiration on the floor, then pronounced dead at the hospital. A plan of correction undertaken by the facility included the termination of several staff members who were “in the vicinity and did not respond” to the ventilator alarm.

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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