ORANGE COUNTY: Lake Forest Nursing Center Gets ‘Short-Term’ Reprieve
The Lake Forest Nursing Center may continue operating based on pending approval of "written plans for correcting a multitude of patient-care violations," the Orange County Register reports. The "short-term reprieve" came Wednesday when the nursing home's owners, Tennessee-based Life Care Centers of America, submitted plans to state Health Services investigators. Jacqueline Lincer, regional office director of the state Department of Health Services, said that "Lake Forest would avoid fines of up to $3,000 a day," if the federal Health Care Financing Administration gives final approval to the plan and the home demonstrates improvements. Beecher Hunter, Life Care Centers executive vice president, said Lake Forest is increasing its nursing staff and has adopted "standardized clinical policies." Hunter said, "It is true that Lake Forest has had a poor regulatory record over the past two years. We take responsibility for not maintaining consistently functional clinical systems. ... But Lake Forest is better today." The company will improve the nursing home, "no matter what the cost," he said. The Register notes, "Lake Forest paid more than $80,000 in fines in 1997 for violations ranging from poor record-keeping to patient neglect." The nursing home is one of two in Orange County currently under intense scrutiny by California's licensing office (Orange County Register, 8/6).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.