Injured Lennwood Nursing and Rehabilitation Center Residents Seeking Financial Compensation
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the state of Texas conduct routine surveys and unannounced investigations at every nursing facility statewide. The effort to the surveyors and inspectors help identify serious concerns involving violations and deficiencies at the Home. When problems are identified, the facility has the opportunity to make immediate corrections to maintain and protect the health and safety of every resident.
In some egregious cases, state and federal nursing center regulators will designate a Home as a Special Focus Facility (SFF) on a national watch list. Receiving this unwelcomed designation means that the facility will have to undergo additional unscheduled surveys and inspections to determine the level of improvements that the nursing home has made. The facility can only be removed from the watch list after many years of proving how significant changes made to the policies/procedures in providing care has significantly increased the quality of life of the resident.
Over one year ago, The Lennwood Nursing and Rehabilitation Center was placed on the watch list and designated a Special Focus Facility. Since then, state and federal regulators have noted that the Home has not made substantial improvements. Some of the major concerns over violations, deficiencies citations are listed below.
The Lennwood Nursing and Rehabilitation Center
This Facility is a “for-profit” Center providing care and services to the residents of Dallas and Dallas County, Texas. The 124-certified bed Long-Term Care Home is located at:
8017 West Virginia Dr.
Dallas, TX 75237
More than $245,000 in Monetary Penalties
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the state of Texas have the authority to issue monetary penalties any nursing facility identified with egregious violations and hazardous conditions. In the last three years, The Lennwood Nursing and Rehabilitation Center received four separate fines that included $160,989 fine on August 28, 2015, a $24,106 fine on November 20, 2015, a $9165 fine on January 17, 2016, and a $51,725 fine on November 10, 2016.
Medicare also denied the facility payment for services provided on two separate occasions. One payment denial occurred on April 22, 2015, and a second on November 20, 2015. In the last three years, there were nine health citations issued by surveyors, one health citation resulting from a formal filed complaint, and three citations issued due to facility-reported issues.
Current Nursing Home Resident Safety Concerns
Publicly available information is regularly added to the federal Medicare.gov website detailing dangerous hazards, opened investigations, health violations, safety concerns, filed complaints, and incident inquiries at nursing homes nationwide. The site also offers a star rating summary system that helps residents and families determine the level of care every facility in the US provides.
Currently, The Lennwood Nursing and Rehabilitation Center maintains a much below average one out of five stars overall compared to all other nursing homes in America. This ranking includes one out of five stars for health inspections, two out of five stars for staffing, and two out of five stars for quality measures. Some serious violations and hazardous deficiencies are listed below.
- Failure to Provide Every Resident Environment Free of Neglect, Abuse or Mistreatment
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated July 20, 2017, the state investigator noted that the facility had failed to ensure that “each resident [maintains] the right to be free from neglect.” This deficiency affected to residents at the facility. In one incident, the facility “failed to provide [two residents] with a resuscitation device… and cannula at the bedside.” The Registered Nurse (RN) “could not confirm he had seen the emergency [devices in each] resident’s room.” The surveyor placed the facility in Immediate Jeopardy on July 19, 2017.
Even though the “Immediate Jeopardy was lowered on July 20, 2017, the facility remained out of compliance at a severity level of ‘no actual harm’ with the potential for ‘more harm than minimal harm’ that is not an Immediate Jeopardy.” The surveyor noted that “these failures could affect the three residents with tracheostomies by placing them at risk of a delay in receiving life-threatening treatment which could result in serious injury including death.”
- Failure to Report and Investigate Any Act or Report of Abuse, Neglect or Mistreatment
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated October 12, 2017, the state investigator noted the facility’s failure “to ensure all alleged violations involving abuse reported immediately, but not later than two hours after the allegation was made, to the Administrator of the facility and other officials including the State Survey Agency.”
It was also noted that a Licensed Vocational Nurse “failed to immediately report an allegation of abuse to the Administrator involving [a resident] and a Certified Nursing Assistant, resulting in more than an eight-hour delay in reporting the allegation to the State Survey Agency.” It was noted that the failure of the nurse “had the potential to affect the 19 residents who resided on Hall 700 where [the Licensed Vocational Nurse] works by placing them at risk for abuse and fear.”
The state surveyor observed a resident while making initial rounds with the Assistant Director of Nursing on October 10, 2017, while the resident was “sitting in a wheelchair near the nursing station.” The Assistant Director stated that “the resident was confused at times and required staff assistance for activities of daily living.”
The facility’s September 29, 2017, Investigation Report reflected that at 8:00 AM on September 23, 2017, the resident alleged to the facility’s Licensed Vocational Nurse that the Certified Nursing Assistant “had poured hot coffee on her while in the main dining room.” The Licensed Vocational Nurse assessed the resident and discovered an abrasion on the right thigh.”
An investigation conducted by the facility “included interviews with residents who were in the dining room at the time of the alleged incident.” The interviews revealed that the resident “spilled the coffee on herself after it had been served.” The Certified Nursing Assistant stated that on that day she had observed the resident “in the dining room for the lunch meal but did not serve or work with the resident. She further stated she was scheduled off [from work] the next two days.” At that time, she had provided the resident “with coffee and was assisting another table when she heard a noise, turned and observed [that] the resident had spilled coffee on herself.”
While the incident occurred at 10:00 AM, the Administrator stated that she had “not been notified of the incident until approximately 3:30 PM” on the day of the incident. The Licensed Vocational Nurse stated that “she had gotten busy and [had] forgotten to call the Administrator to report the incident. The Administrator stated the nurse received a written disciplinary warning and the Certified Nursing Assistant was suspended pending the outcome of the investigation.”
- Failure to Develop, Implement and Enforce Policies That Prevent Mistreatment, Neglect, and Abuse
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated October 12, 2017, the state surveyor noted the facility’s failure “to develop and implement written policies and procedures that prohibit and prevent abuse, neglect, and misappropriation of resident property.” This deficient practice involved a resident’s “allegation of abuse [that] was not immediately and no later than two hours after the allegation was made, reported to the Administration of the facility and other officials including the State Survey Agency.”
- Failure to Ensure That Every Resident Receives an Accurate Assessment by Qualified Health Professional
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated October 12, 2017, the state investigator noted the facility’s failure “to ensure that the assessment accurately reflected the resident’s status.” This deficiency affected three residents “who reviewed for accurate completion of Minimum Data Set [MDS] assessments.” The investigator also noted that the facility had failed to “accurately assess [a resident’s] cognitive patterns and urinary and bowel incontinence participation in assessment on the Quarterly MDS assessment…”
The documentation also revealed the facility’s failure “to accurately assess [another resident’s] urinary and bowel incontinence participation in assessment on the Quarterly MDS assessment…” And in a separate incident, the facility failed “to accurately assess [a third resident’s] functional status related to walking and range of motion on the Quarterly MDS assessment…” These failures by the nursing staff “could affect all 89 residents by placing them at risk for not receiving appropriate care and services.”
- Failure to Provide Drugs Safely to Ensure the Needs of the Residents Are Met
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated October 12, 2017, the state surveyor noted serious deficiencies. There was a failure “to provide pharmaceutical services (including procedures that assure the accurate acquiring, receiving, dispensing, and administering of all drugs and biologicals) that meet the needs and ensure appropriate treatment and services for administering medication through a gastronomy tube.” This deficient practice affected one resident at the facility “observed for medication administration through a gastronomy tube.”
Surveyors observed a Registered Nurse (RN) who “did not use proper technique while administering medications through a gastronomy tube for [a resident]. This deficient practice could affect seven residents who receive medication through a gastronomy [tube] at the facility and can result in potential complications such as aspiration pneumonia, infection, or dehydration.”
- Failure to Train All Employees on What to Do in an Emergency and Carry Out Announced Staff Drills
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated April 5, 2017, the state surveyor noted the facility’s failure “to train all employees in emergency procedures when they began to work at the facility.” There was also a failure to “periodically review the procedure with the existing staff for [a housekeeper and a Licensed Vocational Nurse] reviewed for emergency preparedness.”
The deficiency by the facility also involved a failure “to ensure [the housekeeper and Licensed Vocational Nurse were] properly trained on how to protect residents in the event of a tornado warning and what to do in the event of an electrical power outage to ensure residents care was uninterrupted.”
- Failure to Set up Ongoing Quality Assessment and Assurance Group to Review Quality Deficiencies Quarterly and Develop Corrective Plans of Action
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated April 5, 2017, the state investigator noted that the facility had failed to “maintain a Quality Assessment and Assurance (QAA) Committee consisting of the Director Nursing, a Medical Director, and at least three other members of the facility staff.” There was a failure that the team did not meet “quarterly to identify issues [concerning] which quality assessment and assurance activities were necessary.”
Surveyors also noted that the facility “failed to ensure that the “Medical Director attended the QAA committee meeting on December 19, 2016. This failure could affect 99 residents by placing them at risk for not having a Medical Director current on issues being addressed in the facility for quality monitoring and improvement.”
Abused or Neglected in a Texas Nursing Facility?
If you were the victim of neglect, mistreatment or abuse while you stayed at The Lennwood Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, or any Texas nursing home, you are likely entitled to file a claim for compensation for your damages. An attorney working on your behalf can ensure that all the necessary paperwork and documents have been filed in the appropriate county courthouse before the Texas statute of limitations expires.
Typically, all personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits are handled through contingency fee agreements. This arrangement allows you to file and resolve a case for compensation without making any upfront payments. Your legal services will be paid only after your attorney has successfully resolved your claim at the end of a jury trial or upon negotiating an out of court settlement.
To learn more about laws and regulations applicable to Texas nursing homes, look here.