Nursing home chain settles suit

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORECasino Insider: Here’s a look at San Manuel’s new high limit rooms, Asian restaurant“If Pleasant Care fully complies with all the terms of the 65-page permanent injunction, I think Pleasant Care should be able to adequately protect the safety, welfare and dignity of its residents from this day forward,” said Collin Wong-Martinusen, director of the bureau. Pleasant Care Vice President Dahlia Jimenez said the company had no comment Thursday evening, but planned to release a statement sometime today. Among the improvements that must be enacted by Pleasant Care facilities are mandatory staff training, abuse and neglect investigations, and a whistle-blower protection program which would allow employees, residents and others to anonymously report suspected violations and mistreatment of residents. The facilities also must hire a compliance officer to ensure each facility obeys the law. Wong-Martinusen added that Pleasant Care must hire an independent monitor, to be selected by the attorney general, for whom the company would have to provide an annual budget of up to $750,000. A La Ca?ada Flintridge- based nursing home chain has agreed to pay $1.3 million to settle a civil lawsuit brought by state Attorney General Bill Lockyer. The suit alleged numerous incidents of elder abuse and criminally negligent care by Pleasant Care Corporation, including more than 160 citations issued by the state Department of Health Services in the last five years for regulatory violations. The settlement reached Wednesday calls for a permanent injunction that will require the company to comply with court-enforceable im- provements in the quality of care for the senior citizens who fill the more than 4,300 beds in its 30 skilled nursing facilities across the state. In addition, the injunction will resolve a civil lawsuit filed by Lockyer’s Bureau of Medi- Cal Fraud and Elder Abuse in Los Angeles County Superior Court. The settlement money will go partly to the state, Wong-Martinusen explained, to pursue future unfair business practice actions, while the remainder will be earmarked as unmarked funds for the county. He said those affected by the poor practices of Pleasant Care facilities can “pursue private remedy,” or file personal lawsuits against the company. In fact, he said, many private lawsuits against the company are already in motion. [email protected] (626) 578-6300, Ext. 4496160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more