Friday, October 21, 2016
Gracedale Administrator "I've Got Good News and Bad News
The good news is that the County's nursing home has finally been able to sell 37 excess bed licenses to Wyndmoore Care Center for $700,000, with payment to be received on or before October 30. In addition to the revenue, this sale paves the way to higher Medicaid reimbursement rates. Those payments are higher if 90%of the licensed beds are filled. As of yesterday, Gracedale had a census of 674 with the new maximum bed count at 688. That's 98%.
But those higher rates are in jeopardy, thanks to the bad news. On September 15, a resident told a nurse's aide that she was going to commit suicide. When the aide went to get help from a supervisor, the resident took a magnifying glass, broke it, and slit her wrists."We are totally responsible for that," said Soto. "We dropped the ball in that situation." He explained that proper protocol would have been to remain with the resident and buzz for help.
Gracedale reported itself, and the state Department of Health found there was a "G" level deficiency, meaning one that caused actual harm. It could have imposed a $3,000 fine and closed the facility to future admissions. But on October 18, the state accepted a plan of corrective action from the nursing home that includes education of the entire staff and actively identifying any resident with suicidal ideas. The "G" level deficiency, however, will remain in Gracedale's record for three years. Worse, its current 4-star rating from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) could be reduced to a 3-star rating, leading to lower reimbursements.
Bob Werner and Hayden Phillips were miffed that they were not immediately informed of the incident as well as the bed sale. Acting Administrator Cathy Allen apologized, and said these details are usually disclosed to the Advisory Board, but there was no meeting in September Hayden Phillips agreed that the nurse's aide did what she thought was right and was under a lot of pressure.