National Long-Term Care News Bites: 10 Most Common Nursing Home Violations

Here’s a collection of news bites pertaining to the senior housing and long-term care industries, gathered from around the nation. Many of the articles are state-specific, but could eventually have national implications or influence senior care trends. Click the links to access the full article. 

ProPublica Lists 10 Most Common Nursing Home Violations

From the 262,500 deficiencies in ProPublica’s database, here are the 10 regulations most commonly violated by nursing homes:

  1. Facility is Free of Accident Hazards
  2. Facility Establishes Infection Control Program
  3. Provide Necessary Care for Highest Practicable Well-Being
  4. Store/Prepare/Distribute Food Under Sanitary Conditions
  5. Develop Comprehensive Care Plans
  6. Services Provided Meet Professional Standards
  7. Clinical Records Meet Professional Standards
  8. Not Employ Persons Guilty of Abuse
  9. Drug Regimen is Free from Unnecessary Drugs
  10. Dignity

From Aberdeen News (S.D.)—Health Department Considers C.O.N. Change for Nursing Homes

“The state Department of Health is considering criteria for allowing more beds at nursing homes in Rapid City under a major change quietly passed by the Legislature last winter, reports Aberdeen News. “A 2005 state law capped nursing home beds at 8,130 statewide as of July 1, 2005, and restricted individual nursing homes to the number of beds they each had at that time. But a 2012 state law, requested by Gov. Dennis Daugaard, provides flexibility to the Department of Health to work around the 2005 moratorium. The new law authorizes the department to allow additional beds in an existing nursing home or allow construction of a new nursing home in a community. However, the additional beds can’t cause the statewide total of nursing home beds to exceed the 2005 statewide level.” Read more

From Outcome Magazine (Australia)—Independent Senior Living Aided by Computer Science


“University of Adelaide computer scientists are leading a project to develop novel sensor systems to help older people keep living independently and safely in their own homes. The researchers are adapting radio-frequency identification (RFID) and sensor technologies to automatically identify and monitor human activity; to be able to determine if an individual’s normal routine is being maintained so that timely assistance can be provided if it is needed,” writes Outcome Magazine. “Although RFID technology has been around since World War 2 and is in common use today in applications such as anti-shoplifting and vehicle identification at toll road collection points, its potential use in interpreting human activity remains largely in the laboratory. Dr Sheng says the technology and system they propose has huge potential value in an aging population.” Read more

From the Milford Daily News (Mass.)—Nursing Home Joins Federal Program to Combat Illegal Workers

“Countryside Health Care announced on Tuesday it has adopted the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s IMAGE program, saying it decided to follow the town’s lead.
Countryside, a non-profit nursing and rehabilitation facility, becomes the latest local business to partner with ICE in a program designed to help companies avoid hiring illegal immigrants,” reports The Milford Daily News. “Milford was the first Massachusetts community to join the program, which, among other things, provides rapid verification of I-9 employment eligibility forms.” Read more

From (Fla.)—Assisted Living Home CEO Investigated 

“A Florida woman on house arrest pending the outcome of alleged fraud is still running an assisted-living facility catering to the elderly, officials said. Tiffany Gordon was charged after allegedly billing a Miami hospital for $83,000 for temporary employees the company she led never actually supplied. Detectives allege the workers who got the checks were Gordon’s friends and much of the money was kicked back to her,” reports “Despite those allegations, Gordon is still listed as the chief executive officer, administrator and chief financial officer of Intraqual Premier Assisted Living Facility, The Miami Herald reported Wednesday—all while not being allowed to leave her residence.” Read more

From SFGate (Calif.)—Patients Allowed to Sue Nursing Home Owner for Staffing Violation

“The state Supreme Court on Wednesday allowed a group of patients to sue the owner of 16 nursing homes in Alameda County for allegedly violating California’s nurse-staffing standards. The rules require long-term skilled-nursing facilities to provide each patient with 3.2 hours of nursing care per day. The patients claim homes owned by Covenant Care failed to meet those standards at least 35 percent of the time over a four-year period that started in December 2006, reports SFGate. “In seeking to dismiss the suit, the company argued that only state regulators had the power to enforce the standards and that the law did not authorize a private lawsuit. A Superior Court judge agreed but was overruled in August by the First District Court of Appeal in San Francisco.” Read more

From (Fla.)—Illegal Assisted Living Center Shut Down

“State investigators have told an Orlando couple to stop operating an unlicensed assisted living facility. On Oct. 12, a nurse at Florida Hospital South reported a resident of the home arrived at the emergency room unconscious and bleeding from the head,” reports WESH 2 News. “The man with him could not provide information other than that the victim is mentally challenged. When the man was questioned by sheriff’s investigators, he admitted giving the victim a number of unknown medications all at once. Officials said he had no nursing credentials.” Read more

From Huffington Post—Sandy Causes Communications Breakdown for Nursing Homes and Families

“In the week following the storm, more than two dozen family members of residents at nursing homes in the Rockaways emailed the Huffington Post, asking for help finding loved ones who had effectively gone missing in the wake of the storm. [S]urging water also took down phone lines and rendered inoperable the voice-over-internet systems upon which some of [the skilled nursing] facilities rely,” reports the Huffington Post. “As a result, many of the homes failed to fulfill one of their primary requirements under city protocols that govern evacuations: notify relatives. Instead, they subjected relatives to a kind of perfect storm of bad communication. Family members absorbed news reports about the calamity unfolding on the Rockaways — not only coastal surges and flooding, but a spate of fires. Yet when they tried to find out what had happened their kin — whether they had been moved or were still in harm’s way — they got nothing.” Read more