State officials have imposed a $100,000 fine on a Fontana nursing home in connection with the death of a resident in March, the Riverside Press Enterprise reports. As it turns out, it is the second death for which Citrus Nursing Center has been blamed for in the last three years, the newspaper article says.
The nursing home was cited most recently in October for not taking care of a 91-year-old woman who was dropped on her head. A staff member reportedly did not follow proper procedure while moving the woman from a wheelchair to a bed, according to California Department of Public Health records. The woman died nine days after taking the fall. Interestingly enough, this incident happened Feb. 24, only two weeks after the staff member was trained on how to use the portable lift she attempted to use to transfer the resident in question.
The citation given to Citrus is termed an “AA” citation – which means, it is the most severe penalty that can be issued by law. The nursing home is yet to pay the fine, officials told the newspaper. And apparently, this is not the company’s first violation. Previously, they’ve been cited for failing to contact a doctor about a patient’s worsening condition from a deadly bacterial infection. In another instance, they did not contact the doctor of a diabetic patient, whose blood sugar levels were unsafe.
Consumer advocates are wondering why the state took so long to cite the nursing home even after investigators had completed their investigation. There is no doubt about that. It is completely unacceptable when the state takes eight months to issue a citation, especially in the case of a death, which has so clearly and obviously taken place because of nursing home staff’s incompetence.
The issue of understaffing in nursing homes is also a serious problem. In this case, the woman should have had more people to help her move the patient. But for some reason she had to do it alone. A logical explanation for that is there was no one else to help her. Understaffing is a common way by which nursing homes cut costs and cut corners to increase profits. And this of course, comes at the cost of their customers’ well-being and out of the pockets of family members who trust their loved ones to the care of these unscrupulous nursing homes.
These fines are nothing more than pocket change for these companies that fill up their coffers by cutting corners. If you or a loved one has been a victim of nursing home abuse or negligence, hit them when it hurts the most – their pocket books. Contact an experienced and knowledgeable personal injury attorney who specializes in these types of cases. It’s not only your chance to get compensated for your loss or damages, but to teach these guys the lesson and send out the message that consumers aren’t going to take it! These unethical companies must be held responsible for their actions.