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Canoga Park nursing home fined $75,000 for resident’s death
Los Angeles Daily News
A Canoga Park-based nursing home was fined $75,000 after staff there failed to monitor a resident who kept removing his own breathing tube, resulting in his death, state health officials announced Friday.
Topanga Terrace, at 22125 Roscoe Blvd, received the fine because a resident who relied on a tracheostomy tube to breath died after removing the apparatus in 2013. Investigators with the California Department of Public Health also found the patient suffered from multiple illnesses including dementia, chronic respiratory failure and tuberculosis, but a proper plan of treatment to deter the man from removing his own tube was not in place. The investigation report did not include the patient’s age.
As a result, the skilled nursing home received a Class “AA” citation, the most severe penalty under state law, state health officials said.
“A (California Department of Public Health) investigation found deficiencies that were determined to have been a direct proximate cause of death of a patient or resident,” according to their statement.
Topanga Terrace officials released their own statement Friday.
“This very unfortunate incident occurred three years ago under a different management team,” according to the statement. “We are fully cooperating with all governmental entities involved in this issue. Topanga Terrace continues to have an above average overall rating and an above average quality measure rating from (Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services). Delivering the appropriate level of care for each resident’s needs continues to be our priority.”
The state can issue fines that range from $100 to $2,000 for Class B citations, $2,000 to $20,000 for Class A and $25,000 to $100,000 for Class AA.