Nursing Home Closing Under Pressure From State

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As Bill Hall and his wife Pam load his mother's things into the family van, he laments the closing of a facility where she lived for a year and a half.

"Lot of good aides here, lots of hugs, lots of tears," Hall says.

The violations the home is accused of by the state he says weren't problems he recognized. Their yearly inspection in May turned up "immediate jeopardy" citations--problems the state says put patients in danger. They included smoking in non-designated areas, problems with bedsores, and a lack of a plan to dispense medication.

"The average number of citations for a nursing home in the state is anywhere from 6 to 8," Department of Community Health spokesperson T.J. Bucholz says. "Tendercare South had, over the course of inspections, roughly 3 times the state average."

The department conducted follow-up inspections but did not find the improvement good enough. The state moved in September to ask the federal government to pull funding for medicare and medicaid.

Tendercare disagrees with the scope and severity of the violations, but a spokesperson says they tried to fix things.

"We were working with the state," Tendercare VP of Market Development Paul Stavros told us by phone. "I have no doubt if we were given opportunity, we would have fixed the problems.

They are now voluntarily working with a government team to move all of the 80 patients here. Some are going to Tendercare West across town. Stavros calls them lucky, and the state confirms they have a far cleaner bill with inspectors.

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