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Los Angeles nursing home settles lawsuit after being accused of ‘dumping’ residents for more lucrative COVID-19 patients
The New York Daily News - 3/2/2021
A Los Angeles nursing home has agreed to a series of mandates to better protect its residents after settling a lawsuit over mistreatment, the city attorney announced Monday.
The Lakeview Terrace Skilled Nursing Facility was sued by the city of Los Angeles after being accused of “patient dumping during the pandemic, abuse and neglect, denial of care and efforts to conceal its conduct,” according to a statement from the city.
The lawsuit, filed in July, alleged that Lakeview Terrace discharged long-term residents into the public or to other facilities in order to make room for COVID-19 patients, which earned more lucrative Medicare reimbursements, up to $600 more a day.
Among the patients named in the lawsuit were an 88-year-old man with dementia who was transferred to a boarding house in Van Nuys, then found a day later wandering confused in the street, and a man with HIV who was released and found hiding in a friend’s backyard.
“This victory for these patients is all the more important given COVID-19\u2032s devastating impact on nursing home residents in L.A. and across the nation,” City Attorney Mike Feuer said in a statement.
“Now there will be dramatic improvements in patient care, new COVID-related protections, improved oversight when patients are discharged, and ongoing work by a Performance Monitor to ensure critical safeguards are followed.”
Lakeview Terrace will be required to almost double its staff of registered nurses, install a performance monitor for at least six months to “inspect, observe, provide guidance and ensure that all laws, regulations and the highest standards of patient care are adhered to,” improve patient quality of care and pay a fine of 130,000 in civil penalties and $40,000 in costs and fees incurred by the City Attorney’s Office.
“The City Attorney has achieved a crucial victory for our seniors, one of our most vulnerable populations,” Councilmember Gil Cedillo said in a statement.
“Patient dumping, abuse, neglect and denial of care by Lakeview Terrace Skilled Nursing Facility is outrageous and unacceptable.”
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