Three Maryland Nursing Homes Fined Over Failed COVID-19 Responses
Maryland health officials have issued six-figure fines against at least three nursing homes over failures to maintain proper infection control protocols amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
The Maryland Office of Health Care Quality announced it the nursing home COVID-19 fines after state investigations discovered the facilities failed to properly isolate potentially contagious residents, resulting in hundreds of senior COVID-19 cases and dozens of fatalities, according to a report by The Washington Post.
Collingswood Rehabilitation and Healthcare Center was fined $275,000, Potomac Valley Rehabilitation and Healthcare Center was fined $120,000, and Kensington Healthcare Center was fined $294,000 following COVID-19 surveys and investigations conducted by state inspectors.
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All three facilities were found to lack proper infectious disease control protocols, which placed elderly and vulnerable patients in immediate jeopardy, according to inspector reports released to The Post. Reports indicated the facilities lacked isolation protocols for those reporting symptoms or at high risk of contracting or spreading the virus.
Health Facilities Association of Maryland Chief Executive Joseph DeMattos reported to The Post that the regulatory and quality care violations outlined in the inspection reports are “gravely serious, and extremely concerning.”
At least 270 cases of COVID-19 and 78 resident fatalities were reported among the three facilities since the pandemic first began in March of this year.
Given the severity of the nursing home COVID-19 violations, the facilities stand to lose Medicare and Medicaid funding for new admissions for the next two years, according to inspector reports.
In June, the Maryland Department of Health ordered a fine of $70,000 against Pleasant View after inspectors determined that the facility failed to properly isolate new residents, and failed to keep patients who tested positive for COVID-19 properly separated from those who tested negative.
One month prior, Maryland health officials handed down a $320,000 fine against Sagepoint Senior Living in La Plata following one of the state’s worst nursing home coronavirus outbreaks.
According to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) preliminary data released earlier this month, an estimated 188,954 confirmed cases of COVID-19 have been reported at nursing and long term care facilities across the United States, resulting in over 48,000 fatalities.
A report in early June by CMS indicated more than one-quarter of all coronavirus deaths nationwide occurred in nursing home facilities.
Federal investigators are continuing to explore the possibility of nursing home neglect playing a role in the COVID-19 outbreak, which was first detected in a nursing home in Washington State that became the epicenter for the U.S. pandemic. Similar to the violations found in Maryland nursing homes and other around the nation, investigators stated the nursing home failed to respond to the outbreak adequately, placing residents in jeopardy of illness and death.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reports there are currently nearly 6 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 across the U.S., which have resulted in an estimated 177,759 fatalities.
JESSICANovember 16, 2020 at 11:22 pm
I believe my father died from neglect by this nursing home. He was admitted on March 9, 2020 at PotomacValley Rehabilitation Center, a locked down was put in place by the facility on the same day. Family could not visit him. As the POA, I was called and told by his nurse that he fell on 4-25, caught the covid19 virus on 4-30; he was put in isolation and died on May 21st. I am hurting and seeking [Show More]I believe my father died from neglect by this nursing home. He was admitted on March 9, 2020 at PotomacValley Rehabilitation Center, a locked down was put in place by the facility on the same day. Family could not visit him. As the POA, I was called and told by his nurse that he fell on 4-25, caught the covid19 virus on 4-30; he was put in isolation and died on May 21st. I am hurting and seeking answers with no avail. We buried him on June 5, 2020. Please help, I need answers and justice!
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