There are approximately 15,700 nursing homes in the nation, and about 2.5 percent of them provide “persistently poor” care, as per federal standards. Eleven of these nursing homes are in Tennessee and are considered candidates for designation as Special Focus Facilities (“SFF”) by the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
SFF nursing homes are supposed to receive additional inspections and attention. Since roughly 400 nursing homes are candidates and only 88 can enter the program, these facilities may not become subject to the additional oversight granted to those with SFF designation. That means there’s an excellent chance their persistently poor care continues.
The SFF candidates in Tennessee are:
- Asbury Place at Maryville
- Bailey Park CLC, Humboldt
- Green Hills Health and Rehabilitation Center, Nashville
- Creekside Center for Rehabilitation and Healing, Madison
- Westmoreland Health and Rehabilitation Center, Knoxville
- Rainbow Rehab and Health Care, Bartlett
- Dyersburg Nursing and Rehabilitation, Inc.
- Cornerstone Village, Johnson City
- Life Care Center of Columbia
- Brookhaven Manor, Kingsport
- Lauderdale Community Living Center, Ripley
Violations in Tennessee
Poorly run nursing homes often have a large number of patients with preventable bed sores and communicable infections. Lack of staff contributes to these problems. The SFF nursing homes go beyond these common issues into truly horrifying situations.
For example, at Brookhaven Manor, a resident was found smoking, breaking the nursing home’s rules. The man, suffering from a traumatic head injury, was discharged by the nursing home, but no one notified either the TENNCare Choice program or the state long-term care ombudsman, which paid for his care. Instead, a staff member at Brookhaven drove the man to a hotel, paying for him to stay there for three days. However, no one checked to see if he had his medications, money or a phone.
Later, his various medications were delivered, but the patient’s care plan stated he was incapable of taking them correctly on his own. The Tennessee Board of Investigation is now conducting a criminal investigation into the matter. The nursing home has been renamed Orchard View and is under new management.
Seven residents fell consistently at Asbury Place, including two who fell nine times – one within in a year, the other within four months. The nursing home failed to implement any fall prevention strategies after these incidents.
At Bailey Park, a nurse put a diabetic resident into a coma by giving her 25 times the amount of insulin she was supposed to receive. This facility also failed to report, promptly, the suspension of a nursing assistant for rough handling of a patient.
At Westmoreland, a patient fell out of bed while a nursing assistant changed her sheets, fracturing her knees. However, the nursing assistant did not report the incident, and it was not until a nurse heard the patient screaming in pain as she brought to the hospital.
Creekside’s medication error rate was an astonishing 65 percent – the federal threshold is 5 percent. That huge rate included failing to give diabetic patients insulin, failure to give cardiac patients their blood pressure medications, not following guidelines for cleaning a resident’s wound, and failure to give patients with mental health issues their antidepressants and other drugs.
At Cornerstone Village, patients dealing with incontinence usually waited hours for a response to their call light requests, inevitably soiling themselves. A blind, double amputee in a wheelchair died after an incident at Dyersburg in which his wheelchair flipped off the gate of a transportation van, landing him on his head. There was no escort at the time for the patient. At Green Hills, the staff failed to protect residents from two violent residents.
Whether any of these nursing homes will obtain SFF status is unknown, since that information is not available to the public.
If you or a family member suffered a fall and was seriously injured or is being neglected in a nursing home, convalescent center or long-term living facility, call us today. All consultations are free, without obligation and confidential. We consider cases nationwide.
For more information, contact us online or by phone at 833.201.1555. We also invite you to download or free eBook on How to Sue a Nursing Home for Negligence or Abuse.