legal resources necessary to hold negligent facilities accountable.
Pittsburg Nursing Center (SFF) Abuse and Neglect Attorneys
Both the State of Texas and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) conduct routine investigations, inspections, and surveys at every nursing facility statewide throughout the year. The inspectors’ efforts help to identify serious concerns, health violations, and critical deficiencies that harm or could cause harm, to residents. Once a promise identified, the facility is provided the opportunity to make immediate corrections to their policies and procedures and improvements of the level of care they provide their residents.
In the most serious cases, nursing home regulators will designate the Home as a Special Focus Facility (SFF) and add the facility to the National Medicare deficiency watch list. In these incidences, the facility will undergo additional unscheduled visits and surveys each year, followed by unannounced investigations to examine formally filed complaint issues.
In 2016, state and federal nursing regulators designated Pittsburg Nursing Center as a Special Focus Facility. Now that the Home has been added to the watch list, they are required to make immediate improvements. Likely, the nursing home will remain on the watch list for many years to come until regulators are satisfied that any improvements, corrections, and adjustments made are permanent. Some of the most egregious issues, concerns, violations, deficiencies involving this facility are detailed below.
Pittsburg Nursing Center (SFF)
This Long-Term Care Home is a 104-certified bed Center providing cares and services to residents of Pittsburg and Camp County, Texas. The ‘for profit’ Facility is located at:
123 Pecan Grove
Pittsburg, TX 75686
Both the federal and state governments have the legal authority to impose serious monetary fines against any nursing home in Texas identified with egregious deficiencies and violations. These pecuniary fines are meant to discourage deficient performance and notify the facility that immediate corrections to serious problems must be made to continue providing care and services to Medicaid and Medicare-funded patients.
Over the last three years, regulators have imposed multiple fines against Pittsburg Nursing Center. These penalties include a $54,145 fine on 10/28/2015, a $900 fine on 04/12/2016, and a $189,612 fine on 10/05/2016. During the same time, Medicare denied two requests for payment from the facility due to substandard care. The payment denials occurred on October 20, 2015, and October 5, 2016. Additionally, state nursing home regulators received ten formally filed complaints and one facility-reported issue that after investigations all resulted in citations.
Current Nursing Home Resident Safety Concerns
To be fully informed on the level of care nursing homes provide, families routinely research the Medicare.gov database system for a complete list of health violations, dangerous hazards, safety concerns, incident inquiries, opened investigations, and filed complaints. This information provides valuable content to make a well-informed decision of where to place a loved one who requires the highest level of skilled nursing care and hygiene assistance.
Currently, Pittsburg Nursing Center maintains an overall two out of five stars compared to all nursing homes in the US. This ranking includes one out of five stars for health inspections, four out of five stars for staffing issues, and three out of five stars for quality measures. Some of the major concerns, deficiencies, problems, and violations involving this facility include:
- Failure to Follow Protocols, Procedures, and Policies by Following Every Resident’s Written Plan of Care
- Failure to Develop, Implement and Enforce Policies and Forbid Mistreatment, Neglect or Abuse of Residents
- Failure to Notify the State Agency of an Incident or Allegation a Potential Abuse or Neglect
- Failure to Ensure That Services Provided by the Nursing Staff Meet Professional Standards of Quality
- Failure to Provide an Environment Free of Unnecessary Physical Restraints
- Failure to Protect Every Resident from Abuse, Physical Punishment, or Being Separated from Others
- Failure to Report and Investigate Acts or Allegations of Abuse, Neglect or Mistreatment of Residents
- Failure to Develop, Implement and Enforce Policies and Forbid Mistreatment, Neglect or Abuse of Residents
- Failure to Provide an Environment Free of Accident Hazards
- Failure to Ensure the Nursing Aides Have the Skills and Techniques to Provide Care That Meets the Resident’s Needs
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated August 14, 2015, the state investigator noted the facility’s failure “to provide services [following] the written Plan of Care for [one resident]. The weekend register nurse did not perform treatment orders per [the resident’s] Care Plan and as ordered by the physician. This failure could place seven residents with pressure sores at risk to not receive appropriate treatment and plates and at risk for worsening of the pressure sores.”
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated August 14, 2015, the state investigator documented that the facility’s “failure to develop and implement policies and procedures to prevent neglect for [two residents] reviewed for neglect.” One incident involved a resident who was admitted to the facility “following surgery to his left ankle, with a cast on his leg. The facility did not adequately assess [the resident] following surgery to his left ankle. [The resident] developed gangrene (tissue death to his toes and foot) and was sent to the hospital twelve days later, and required a left, above-the-knee, amputation.”
The state investigator documented that “the facility did not inform the physician of the resident’s admission until July 13, 2015, [and] did not obtain a doctor’s orders for the cast/splint care [and] did not perform an accurate assessment of the area.” The evidence also revealed that the nursing staff “did not perform an accurate assessment of the area, and did not ensure the resident went to his follow-up post-surgical appointment. This failure contributed to [the resident] developing gangrene in his wound that resulted in an above-the-knee amputation.”
In a second incident, another resident had an “open area to his toe worsen since it was first identified on August 12, 2015. The facility did not perform timely skin assessments.” These deficiencies caused in “Immediate Jeopardy situation that was identified in existed from July 6, 2015, through July 18, 2015”. The surveyor noted that “this failure could place thirteen residents identified with high-risk of skin breakdown at risk for inadequate skin assessments, skin breakdown, infections, pain, and amputation.”
In a statement of deficiencies dated August 14, 2015, the state surveyor noted the facility’s failure “to implement the written policies and procedures that prohibit abuse/neglect, and misappropriation to the State Agency for [two residents] reviewed for abuse/neglect/misappropriation.” This incident involved a resident who was not adequately assessed following surgery to his left ankle that resulted in the development of gangrene while at the facility and the need for an above-the-knee amputation.
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated August 14, 2015, the state surveyor noted the facility’s failure “to ensure nursing services met professional standards of quality for two residents.” One incident involved the resident noted above who requires an above-the-knee amputation due to gangrene following a failure to provide necessary care and services after returning from the hospital following surgery on the left ankle.
As a part of the investigation, the investigator noted that the Director of Nursing at the facility “did not assess the resident’s foot, ensure nursing was assessing his foot and did not have a system to ensure skin assessments are done for [the resident]. The Director of Nursing did not supervise the nursing staff to ensure [the resident] was receiving adequate care [and] did not inform the physician of [the resident’s] admission until July 13, 2015, and did not obtain physician’s orders.
The surveyor also documented that the Licensed Vocational Nurse “did not contact the Medical Director for approximately ten days after the resident’s admission on July 6, 2015.” The Nurse also “did not contact his orthopedic physician for clarification of orders on how to assess [the resident’s] foot/cast and did not ensure follow-up physician appointments were made.” The surveyor said that “this failure contributed to [the resident] developing gangrene in his wound that resulted in an above-the-knee amputation.”
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated September 9, 2015, the state investigator documented the facility’s failure “to ensure residents were free from physical restraints which were not required to treat medical symptoms are utilized as a replacement for staff supervision for [one resident].” The incident involved a resident who “did not have medical justification to be tied in bed.”
The resident “was found with a blanket stretched across her body from her chest to her neck and tied to the side rail. The facility did not investigate or put any preventative actions in place to prevent the recurrence of restraint use. An Immediate Jeopardy situation was identified [at the facility] on September 8, 2015.” The surveyor documented that “this failure could place twelve residents with behaviors at risk of unnecessary restriction of movement, lack of supervision, and injury or death.”
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated September 9, 2015, the state investigator documented the facility’s failure “to ensure the resident’s rights to be free from physical abuse and involuntary seclusion.” The deficient practice by the nursing staff affected two residents, including one who “was tied to the bed with a blanket, and unable to get up.”
The second incident involved an allegation of abuse on a second resident who “reported the abuse of the facility did not protect the resident from the Certified Nursing Aide or investigate the allegation.” The investigator documented that “this failure could place [48 residents] at risk for abuse, harm or even death.”
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated September 9, 2015, the state investigator documented the facility’s failure “to investigate allegations of staff-to-resident abuse, and did not protect the resident from further abuse, and did not report allegations to the State Agency.” The deficient practice by the nursing staff affected two residents, one of whom was tied to a bed with a blanket, and the other who reported abuse by a Certified Nursing Assistant.”
In a separate incident of deficiencies dated July 16, 2017, the state investigator documented that the facility had failed to “ensure all alleged violations of neglect were reported to the Administrator and State agency [by] State Law and failed to have evidence of all alleged violations are thoroughly investigated.”
The state surveyor stated that “the facility did not report the incident of neglect immediately to the Administrator and State Agency when the resident was found rubbing a hazardous chemical in her eyes. The facility did not investigate or provide documentation of the investigation into the incident of neglect for the resident. This failure could place …forty-two residents at risk of neglect.”
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated July 16, 2017, the state investigator noted the facility’s failure “to ensure implementation of written policies and procedures to ensure [one resident] reviewed for neglect was free from neglect.” The investigator documented that the facility “failed to remove a hazardous chemical out of the resident’s room after she was rubbing it in her eyes. The nurse did not report the incident to the oncoming shift, delaying physician notification treatment for twenty-one hours.”
The result of the incident left the resident being able to only “see color and shapes.” The surveyor documented that “this failure contributed to the resident’s eye injury [which is] likely permanent [condition]. The surveyor noted that “this fare could place twenty-eight residents with dementia and other delusional disorders at risk for severe injury or delays in medical treatment.”
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated July 16, 2017, the state investigator document at the facility’s failure “to ensure the resident environment remained as free from accident hazards as possible for [a resident].” The surveyor documented that the facility “failed to remove hazardous chemicals out of [the resident’s] room after she was seen rubbing [the chemicals] into her eyes. The nurse did not report the incident to the oncoming shift, delaying physician notification treatment for twenty-one hours.”
In a summary statement of deficiencies dated September 21, 2017, the state investigator documented that the facility had failed to “ensure [one Certified Nursing Aide] demonstrated compensate and techniques to care for [a resident] reviewed for incontinent care.” The surveyor documented that “this failure could place nineteen residents who were frequently occasionally incontinent of the bowel at risk for discomfort, skin breakdown, and urinary tract infections.”
An observation was made of a Certified Nursing Aide providing “incontinent care [for resident]. The [CNA] did not clean [the resident’s] perineal area.” The surveyor interviewed a Certified Nursing Assistant who stated that “she normally clean resident’s perineal area during incontinent care “and was nervous and forgot. During an interview with the facility’s Director of Nursing, it was revealed that the Director “expected staff to clean up resident’s perineal area during incontinent care.”
Was Your Loved One Abuse or Neglected in a Nursing Home?
If you or your family suspect that your loved one was the victim of abuse, neglect or mistreatment BY caregivers while a patient at Pittsburg Nursing Center, contacting a personal injury attorney could be a wise decision. With legal representation, your family can file a claim for compensation to assure they receive the monetary recovery they deserve. The law firm working on your behalf can handle every aspect of the case including investigating the claim, gathering evidence, negotiating a settlement, or taking the lawauit to trial.
A personal injury attorney will provide immediate legal representation without any upfront payment or fee. All your fees for legal services are paid only after the law firm has successfully resolved your case in a court of law or through a negotiated out of court settlement on your behalf.