Uptown Westerville Healthcare – Inspection Results, Penalties, and Inclusion in Senate Report on Poorly-Performing Nursing Homes

Rating from the Medicare.gov Nursing Home Compare Website

Uptown Westerville Healthcare (“Uptown Westerville”) is located at 1060 Eastwind Drive Westerville, Ohio, 43081. As of June 28, 2019, Uptown Westerville did not have a star rating on Medicare’s Nursing Home Compare website, as it has been placed on the federal government’s Special Focus Facility list.*  These details are provided below.

The Medicare.gov Nursing Home Compare Website

The United States government has developed a website that allows users to see information on individual nursing homes regarding inspections, violations and deficiencies, which is located at https://www.medicare.gov/nursinghomecompare.  Information provided in the Nursing Home Compare website includes detailed information about inspections, facility deficiencies, staffing, penalties, bed certification, and much more.  This website is run by Medicare, and was created so that users and families can easily compare different nursing homes based upon the same set of standards.

Nursing homes are required to provide care to residents that follows or complies with federal regulations.  The periodic inspections of nursing homes are designed to determine if they are following the regulations and therefore giving good care. If they violate the regulations, they are issued a citation and sometimes a monetary fine.

The New Senate Report, Special Focus Facilities and Special Focus Facility Candidates, and the Designation of Uptown Westerville as a Special Focus Facility

In June, 2019, a US Senate report (the “Senate Report”) was issued by US Senators Casey and Toomey entitled Families’ and Residents’ Right to Know: Uncovering Poor Care in America’s Nursing Homes. This report concerns, in large part, the public identification of Medicare/Medicaid Special Focus Facility participants and candidates.  As of June 28, 2019, according to the Nursing Home Compare website, Uptown Westerville continues to be on the Special Focus Facility list due to the poor care it was providing its residents.*  This is very important information to families who have had a loved one at this nursing home and they had suspicions of abuse or neglect or for families considering this home for their family member.

The Special Focus Facilities Program

The Special Focus Facility (“SFF”) program was created in connection with the adoption of The Nursing Home Act, which established nursing facility participation requirements under Medicare and Medicaid.  These nursing homes are at risk to causing harm to residents due to their failure to follow the regulations.  As cited in the Senate Report, “[t]he SFF program is designed to increase oversight of facilities that persistently underperform in required inspections conducted by state survey agencies.”   When a nursing home does not comply with the regulations that govern care in nursing homes, then they get cited. If they receive a lot of citations over a period of time, then the government may place them into the SFF program.

As of April, 2019, approximately 80 facilities are on the Special Facility Focus this list, which includes facilities determined by Medicare to have a “history of persistent poor quality of care.”  Facilities included on this list are subject to increasing inspections (at least one every six months), escalating fines, and the possibility of losing Medicare and Medicaid funding if improvements are not made. As of April, 2019, approximately 80 facilities were included in the SFF program.

Special Focus Facility Candidates

In addition to the facilities named to the SFF program, the government has created an additional list of approximately 400 nursing homes considered to be poorly-performing based upon past inspections.  These facilities are considered “Special Focus Facility candidates” because of the possibility that may be named to the Special Focus Facility program if their operations do not improve.

Previously, while the names of SFF’s were publicly disclosed, the names of the Special Focus Facility candidates – those nursing facilities in danger of being included in the SFF – were not publicly disclosed.  Believing that the public should know the names of all these underperforming nursing homes, Senators Casey and Toomey made a request to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (the “CMS”) for the names of the SFF candidates, and the government complied with this request.  The senators then released their report in June, 2019, which includes the names of those in the SFF program and those considered Special Focus Facility candidates as of April, 2019. *

Uptown Westerville Fines Penalties

The nursing home has recently been the subject of penalties as the result of deficiencies found in inspections.  According to the Nursing Home Compare website, Uptown Westerville received penalties of $15,636 on January 26, 2018, $20,965 on July 26, 2017, $15,581 on May 9, 2017, and $29,182 on November 17, 2016.

Recent Health Inspection Reports on the Medicare.gov Website for Uptown Westerville

As shown in the charts below, recent inspections revealed a number of significant and serious issues involving the care provided to nursing home residents which resulted in actual harm and/or presenting an immediate risk of resident health or safety.

This is unacceptable.  We should not allow nursing homes to abuse and neglect our seniors by not following regulations.

As of June 27, 2019, the following information was reported on the Nursing Home Compare website for Uptown Westerville:

Level 3 and Level 4 “Level of Harm” Citations

According to the Medicare.gov Nursing Home Compare website, as of June, 2019, the following shows the results of recent inspections that resulted in a Level 3 or Level 4 “Level of Harm” for this facility in which the inspection and/or the correction occurred between January, 2018, and June, 2019:

Uptown Westerville Healthcare

The Betrayal of Trust

We entrust nursing homes to properly care for our loved ones, including parents, grandparents, and other family members.  When they fail to provide adequate and proper care, and when injury results, there are no words to properly express this betrayal.  While there is no way to undue the harm that has been caused, there is a way to seek a measure of damages, and to hopefully prevent future injury and death from occurring.

Do You Have a Case?

I offer a free consultation so that you can learn if you have a case for your loved one.  With more than 30 years of representing those injured and the families who have lost a loved one, and having previously been a nurse before becoming a lawyer, I have seen countless cases of devastating injuries caused by nursing home abuse, neglect, and negligence.

I would welcome the opportunity to speak with you about your loved one’s injuries, and to discuss with you the options that may be available for seeking compensation.

I am committed to holding negligent nursing homes fully accountable for all harm and injury that they cause, and to seeking compensation on behalf of clients to the fullest extent of the law.  Holding nursing homes financially responsible is the only way to get them to change their actions so that hopefully future residents will not be harmed.

Please Call Today for a Free Consultation, and to Learn If You Have a Case (and Your Options)

I accept nursing home cases on a contingency fee representation.  This means that you will only owe a fee for my time if I am successful in obtaining compensation for you.  I would look forward to learning about your case.

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*  The information presented herein is accurate as of June 10, 2019, unless a different date is noted. The federal government has the sole authority to add or remove facilities included in the Special Focus Facility program and those facilities designated as Special Focus Facility candidates.  If improvements are made, nursing homes can receive a higher star rating from Medicare on the Medicare.gov website, and facilities named to the Special Focus Facility program or named to the Special Focus Facility candidate list can be removed from such program or list.  Because this information will not be updated, readers are urged to consult the Medicare.gov website for a current facility star rating, and also to that website (or other relevant information) to determine the names of the facilities currently included in the Special Focus Facility program and those currently considered Special Focus Facility candidates.

Nancy Iler - Ohio Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Lawyer