Attorneys for SFF Riverside Heights Health Care Center Injured Victims
Some nursing homes in California are categorized as Special Focus Facilities by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) because they failed to provide minimal standards of care to their residents. By law, these facilities must take appropriate measures to ensure that all problems are immediately corrected to help maintain the health and well-being of those under their care. To ensure much-needed policies and procedures are enforced, the federal agency routinely monitors the nursing home using surveyors and investigators. These surveys are conducted through scheduled appointments and unexpected investigations anytime throughout the year when inquiring about formally filed complaints.
Currently, Riverside Heights Health Care Center is designated as a Special Focus Facility because of serious safety problems that routinely occurred at the nursing home. The Healthcare Center was given the opportunity to take appropriate measures to develop, implement and enforce affected policies and procedures to ensure that every resident receives at least the basic standards of care without the potential of being harmed, injured or killed by preventable conditions, hazards, and dangers.
The facility will maintain this unwanted designation until all necessary corrections have been made and numerous follow-up surveys and investigations have been taken to ensure that the policies and procedures of providing quality care are permanent. A failure to do so over time could terminate the contract the facility has with Medicare and Medicaid.
Riverside Heights Healthcare Center (SFF)
Riverside Heights Health Care Center is a special focus facility Medicare/Medicaid-participating 70-certified bed for-profit nursing facility providing care and services to the residents of the city of Riverside and Riverside County, California. The facility is located at:
8951 Granite Hill Dr.
Riverside, CA 92509
More than $100,000 in Penalties
The serious violations and ongoing failures occurring at Riverside Heights Health Care Center lead to serious penalties issued by state investigators. Over the last three years, the facility received fines of $92,598 (October 10, 2016) and $26,250 (January 26, 2017).
Current Nursing Home Resident Safety Concerns
The state of California and the federal government routinely rank the assistance, care, and services that every nursing facility provides and displays the information in a star rating system. Currently, Riverside Heights Health Care Center maintains an overall two out of five stars compared all other facilities throughout the United States. The current resident safety concerns involving this facility include:
- Failure to Ensure That Every Resident Receives the Necessary Care and Services to Maintain Their Highest Well-Being
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated January 26, 2017, the state investigator noted the facility’s failure “to ensure specific cares and services were provided for [three residents at the facility].” In an incident involving one resident, “the facility was not able to obtain pacemaker information since [the resident was admitted]. This failure had the potential to delay the facility staff’s response to treatment of [the resident’s condition].”
In a separate incident with another resident, “the facility did not administer five medications as scheduled and did not notify the physician when there was a delay in the pharmacy delivery. This failure had the potential to alter the resident’s medication management related to pain, blood pressure, behavior and reflux (a condition when the stomach acid or, stomach content backs up] in the food pipe.” A third resident was affected when the facility “did not follow up on the weight committee’s recommendation for an iron supplement. This failure had the potential for the resident not to receive the recommended amount of iron in the blood and delayed nutritional management.”
- Failure to Ensure That Every Resident Entering the Nursing Home without a Catheter Is Not Given Catheter and Receives Proper Services to Prevent Urinary Tract Infections
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated January 26, 2017, the investigator noted the facility’s failure “to identify the periods of bladder incontinence (ability to control urine) and provide appropriate treatment services to restore normal bladder function, as possible, for [one resident at the facility].” Investigators noted that “this failure resulted in missed opportunities to provide bladder retaining for [a resident] for … October through December 2016.”
The State surveyor noted that the facility failed to follow their Urinary Continence and Incontinence – Assessment and Management policy and procedure dated September 2010 that reads in part:
“The physician and staff should provide appropriate services and treatment to help residents restore or improve bladder function. Staff will define each individual’s level of incontinence. As part of its assessment, nursing staff will seek and document details related to continents. The nursing staff and physician will identify risk factors for becoming incontinent or for worsening of current incontinence. The staff will document the results of the toileting trial in the resident’s medical record. The staff and physician will evaluate the effectiveness of interventions.
- Failure to Ensure That Every Resident Remained Protected from Serious Medical Mistakes
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated January 26, 2017, investigators noted the facility had failed to “ensure a physician’s orders” were followed. An observation of a medication pass was made on January 23, 2017, at 8:00 AM. Surveyors noted that the pharmacy label on drugs being administered to two residents “did not match the physician’s orders. The surveyor interviewed the facility’s Assistant Director of Nursing who stated that the “resident’s order was correctly transcribed from the hospital record on the MAR (Medication Administration Record).” However, “the medical record staff was not able to correctly reproduce the order on the electronic MAR and the initial and monthly physician’s recalculation orders.”
The State surveyor stated that the facility had failed to follow their policy titled Medication Ad. Here ministration – General Guidelines that reads in part:
“Prior to administration, the medication and doses schedule on the resident’s MAR shall be compared to the medication label. If the label and the MAR are different and the container is not flagged indicating a change in directions or if there is any other reason to question the dosage or directions… Medication shall be administered in accordance with written orders of the attending physician.”
- Failure to Properly Store, Cook and Serve Food in a Safe and Clean Manner
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated January 26, 2017, an observation was made revealing that the facility had failed to “store food under sanitary conditions when [hazardous food] was observed inside the refrigerator, available for use. This failure increased potential to result in foodborne illnesses including nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea, and a medically vulnerable resident population.”
- Failure to Develop a Program That Investigates, Controls and Keeps Infections from Spreading
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated January 26, 2017, the state investigator noted the facility’s failure “to implement a safe and appropriate handling of medical waste when the facility’s bile hazard container was unsecured and located in an area accessible to residents and unauthorized individuals. It was noted that this failure “had the potential for increased risk of cross-contamination and the spread of infection to the resident the s, staff, and visitors at the facility.”
- Failure to Provide Necessary Cares and Services to Maintain the Highest Well-Being of the Resident
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated February 3, 2017, the state investigator noted that the facility had failed “to provide the necessary care and services to obtain the highest quality of care [for a resident]. The facility nurses were not properly providing treatment for [the resident’s condition that resulted in the resident] developing dry and wet gangrene (death of body tissue resulting from obstructive circulation or infection) of both feet.” The results of the neglect resulted in “required acute care hospitalization, which subsequently may require above-the-knee amputation for both extremities.”
A family member filed a formal complaint against the facility. As a result, State surveyor conducted an unannounced complaint visit on December 22, 2016. The resident’s family member stated that the “physician made a recommendation of amputating both of his legs at an acute care hospital due to no circulation.”
The family member at stated that “facility nurses did not assess his feet during his stay at the facility [… and] in the first week of December, she received a call from the facility that [their loved one] had an altered level of consciousness and needed to be transferred to the hospital.” The family member also stated that their loved one “had gangrene on both feet.” The State surveyor interviewed the facility’s Assistant Director of Nursing who stated that “there were no residents at the facility with foot wound issues.”
- Failure to Provide Proper Care for Residents Requiring Special Services
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated February 3, 2017, the state investigator noted the facility’s failure “to provide treatment and care for [a resident’s circulatory condition in which narrow blood vessels reduced blood flow to the limbs of the lower legs.” This problem was revealed after a podiatrist’s assessment indicated there were “no pedal pulses felt on multiple elevations [and] there was no communication amongst nurses to monitor the decrease pulses of the feet and no Plan of Care for [the resident’s medical condition].”
The failure of the nursing staff resulted in “further complications of decreased circulation, gangrene (death of body tissue resulting from obstructive circulation or infection) of the feet, infection, and a recommendation from the vascular surgeon to amputate above the knees.”
- Failure to Ensure That Every Resident Remained Free from Accidental Hazards
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated January 26, 2017, the state investigator noted the facility’s failure to ensure that a resident “received adequate supervision to prevent an accident. This failure resulted in [the resident] having a fall, and suffered a left shin and left ankle fracture that required three surgical treatments to repair a left ankle fracture.” It was also noted that there was a failure in ensuring that the resident “was assessed for safety and appropriate use of side rails. This failure had the potential to put the resident at risk for injuries from accidents and entrapment.”
- Failure to Provide Appropriate Leadership to a Medically Vulnerable Population
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated November 11, 2016, the state investigator noted the facility’s failure “to provide appropriate leadership to the facility staff by providing services to the [residential] population.” This failure was evidenced by 1.) A staff member “was terminated and the Administrator was unaware of the incident”; and 2.) Another staff member “voluntarily left the facility for not being able to verbalize concerns with the quality of care for the residents at the facility to the State surveyors.”
The surveyors noted that these failures “have the potential to cause a negative and hostile work environment for the residents and subsequently cause the residents and facility staff to feel powerless and unprotected by management.” The findings of the incident revealed that on the morning of November 4, 2016, “a complete investigation was conducted at the facility regarding retaliation going on against employee staff who spoke out about management or conditions at the facility.”
The State surveyor interviewed the facility’s Director of Nursing that morning who stated that “there was one faculty staff member that was terminated last week [and that] she was not getting an appropriate response from her when asked about the weekly wound summary of a resident.” By November 7, “a follow-up complaint visit was conducted at the facility,” and an interview with the facility Administrator was conducted who stated that “she was unaware of why the Director of Nursing terminated the [employee].”
- Failure to Ensure the Residents Remained Safe from Serious Medical Mistakes
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated November 11, 2016, the state investigator noted the facility’s failure “to ensure that residents were free from any significant medication errors when there was evidence that medications were not administered as ordered by the doctor on September 24, 2016. These failures placed the resident at risk for possible unforeseen medical complications.”
Were You Injured or Harmed through Nursing Home Abuse or Neglect at a Facility in California?
If your loved one was harmed, injured or killed because of negligence, abuse or mistreatment while residing in a nursing facility, your family can take appropriate measures to obtain financial compensation and seek justice. A skilled California nursing home abuse law firm representing the family can ensure that those responsible for causing your loved ones harm are held accountable.
View our page on California nursing home laws and regulations here.
For material related to specific inspection reports and attorneys serving specific cities, look at the pages below:
- Anaheim Nursing Home Lawyers
- Bakersfield Nursing Home Lawyers
- Chula Vista Nursing Home Lawyers
- Fontana Nursing Home Lawyers
- Fremont Nursing Home Lawyers
- Fresno Nursing Home Lawyers
- Irvine Nursing Home Lawyers
- Long Beach Nursing Home Lawyers
- Los Angeles Nursing Home Lawyers
- Oakland Nursing Home Lawyers
- Oxnard Nursing Home Lawyers
- Redding Nursing Home Lawyers
- Riverside Nursing Home Lawyers
- Sacramento Nursing Home Lawyers
- San Bernardino Nursing Home Lawyers
- San Diego Nursing Home Lawyers
- San Francisco Nursing Home Lawyers
- San Jose Nursing Home Lawyers
- Santa Ana Nursing Home Lawyers
- Stockton Nursing Home Lawyers