GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — State regulators visited 12 West Michigan nursing homes in recent weeks to determine if they’re meeting infection control standards amid the COVID-19 outbreak.
Surveyors deemed five of the 12 homes non-compliant.
The problems noted ranged from staff wearing “loose fitted homemade masks” at the Allendale home, to an employee at Heritage Community of Kalamazoo failing to disinfect an oxygen device that had been lying on the floor.
“Just prior to placement in the nostrils, this surveyor asked (the employee) if there was anything that should be done before placing the nasal cannula into Resident #101’s nostrils,” wrote the state regulator in the survey posted online. “(The employee) indicated there was not. The surveyor then asked (the employee) if the oxygen tubing and nasal cannula should be cleaned or changed… since it had been on the floor. (The employee indicated that was a good point and should (sic) be changed because it was probably dirty.”
Among the observations at Medilodge of Wyoming, a surveyor noted “Resident 1 and 2 were found sitting in wheelchairs within a few feet of each other. Resident 1 was observed coughing into his hand. (A licensed practical nurse) was standing … nearby and handed resident a tissue…. (A certified nurses aid) walked between the residents and did not attempt to provide assistance with recommendation (sic) social distancing or hand hygiene for resident 1.”
>>PDF: Medilodge of Wyoming survey
At Medilodge of Portage, an inspector observed staff helping residents prepare to eat in a dining room.
“In an observation/interview on 3/31/2020 at 12:10 p.m., this surveyor asked (a certified nurses aide/CNA) at what point during the dining is resident hand hygiene performed? Note that this question was asked after food was served to the residents. In response to question, (CNA) stated, ‘right now,.’ At that point, (CNA) retrieved hand wipes … and proceeded to clean the hands of the resident; some of whom had already begun eating.”
>>PDF: Medilodge of Portage
The regulator who surveyed Laurels of Galesburg wrote that “the facility failed to properly maintain infection control practices during a COVID-19 Infection Control Survey related to hand hygiene, equipment cleaning, and glucometer disinfection in 5 of 5 residents.”
>>PDF: Laurels of Galesburg
The Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs, which conducts nursing home inspections on behalf of federal regulators, provides on-the-spot re-education, while also requiring homes to submit formal Plans of Corrections.
If homes fail to follow through, they can face monetary penalties, among other disciplinary action.
WHAT CITED HOMES HAVE TO SAY
Target 8 reached out to all five West Michigan nursing homes seeking comment.
As of Friday evening, we’ve received responses from four of the five:
“While the use of face masks by caregivers is not currently required by the CDC, proper infection control protocols must accompany their use,” wrote Mike Deverson, vice president of sales and marketing for Atrium Centers Inc, which operates Allendale Nursing & Rehabilitation Community.
“Continued training on PPE and Universal Precautions has been completed and submitted to the state agency for review…. Allendale has successfully implemented all CDC, CMS and Michigan state and county health department guidelines and not a single case of the infection among either employees or residents has been identified.”
Jay Prince, president and CEO of Heritage Community of Kalamazoo, wrote that the home has taken immediate steps to address the survey findings, including bringing in an outside infection prevention and control consultant to evaluate all of its procedures.
“We welcomed the survey as a fresh set of eyes to make sure we do the right things in the right way, and to identify any gaps. The survey did precisely that, including finding some practices we weren’t always doing well….. While none of the gaps were deemed to have caused harm to residents, Heritage takes the findings extremely seriously,” Prince wrote.
Medilodge, whose facilities in Wyoming and Portage were cited by the state, said its homes are “following all the state and federal guidelines on how to prevent the spread of COVID-19.”
“This includes enhanced infection control protocols, expanded use of personal protective equipment such as masks and gowns, restricting visitors, screening staff and no communal activities,” wrote Bill Gray of Medilodge, who noted that Medilodge has also employed facility support advocates to help residents, including coordinating video chats between residents and their families.
Laurels of Galesburg did not provide a statement to News 8, but you can read how they plan to respond here.
STATE SURVEYED CEDAR SPRINGS HOME WITH 10 DEATHS
State licensing authorities also visited a Cedar Springs home that’s been particularly hard hit by COVID-19.
Mission Point of Cedar Springs, formerly known as Metron of Cedar Springs, has reported 34 COVID-positive residents and 10 deaths.
“In regards to Mission Point of Cedar Springs, the survey team completed an infection control survey there last week. The team found no concerns with infection control,” said David Harns, interim director of communications for the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs.
STATE: EASTSIDE HOME’S “DEFICIENCIES” CAUSED “CROSS-CONTAMINATION”
That was not the case for another home that has been ravaged by the novel coronavirus.
According to records in the state’s online database, 44 of 95 residents at Advantage Living Center of Roseville had symptoms of COVID-19.
Nineteen were sent to the hospital, and at least nine died.
In addition, 17 employees displayed symptoms, leaving the facility severely understaffed.
According to online records, a surveyor determined that sick calls during one overnight shift left “one (certified nurses aide/CNA) for the reported 41 residents on the second floor and one (CNA) for the reported 31 residents on one North and one (CNA) for the reported 23 residents on one South (isolation unit).’”
“CNA was asked about their ability to meet the needs of 41 residents and stated, ‘it feels horrible.’ CNA reported they were able to get to 23 of the 41 residents overnight and was still working to get them done.”
Regulators also reported that staff said medical equipment was so limited they had to bring in their own.
“‘Sometimes you gotta spend your own money to make your day go okay,’” a surveyor quoted a licensed practical nurse as saying.
“‘I have one resident who is actively dying right now. They are a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) but not hospice.’”
State surveyors reported the “deficiencies” at Advantage Living Center of Roseville ultimately led to “cross-contamination” between the isolation and the non-isolation areas of the facility… nine resident deaths with confirmed/suspected COVID-19 and the likelihood of infection and/or death for all 95 residents residing in the facility.”
Inspectors also cited the home for failing to “respond to a change in condition in a timely manner” for one resident, and delaying “transfer to the hospital related to COVID-19.”
OWNER VEHEMENTLY DENIES STATE’S ALLEGATIONS
Kelsey Hastings, co-owner of the facility, vehemently denied the state’s allegations.
“We feel very strongly … that we have enough evidence to demonstrate that much of (the state’s findings were) factually incorrect,” said Hastings in a phone conversation with Target 8.
“I think they were just doing it too fast. It was the state’s first survey. They came in (unannounced) at 6:15 in the morning…. It was just incredibly disorganized. The surveyor would talk to a staff member and wouldn’t verify that what the staff member said was correct. So like on the staffing one, she had talked to a nurse and the nurse said, ‘no, there were no other nurses’, yet there were three other nurses in the building plus other staff. But the nurse was working on one unit, so she didn’t know there were other people there, but there were plenty of people there.”
Hastings went on to point out that staff get “nervous” when talking to surveyors and are “tired and venting.”
“We have evidence to show that what’s in (the state report) isn’t true. I can’t even tell you how frustrating this is… We’re trying to do what we do, and we just keep getting attacked.”
Hastings sent messages to staff via YouTube, thanking them for their hard work.
“You are truly, truly, truly amazing,” she told workers in one video.
“I believe that we have one of the most courageous teams across the United States. Thank you for your courage and your willingness to overcome any feelings of fear you may have so that you can care for our residents…. I have watched many of you, when you got the call, go running up that mountain, saying ‘we will defeat this.’ You have been just amazing through this whole process.’”
Of the 81 Infection Control Surveys conducted statewide and reviewed by Target 8, 21 or 25% resulted in citations for non-compliance.
To look up a nursing home’s record, click here.
MI Nursing Homes cited by state for infection control failures:
- Allendale Nursing and Rehabilitation Community
- Heritage Community of Kalamazoo
- Laurels of Galesburg
- Medilodge of Wyoming
- Medilodge of Portage
- Medilodge of Frankenmuth
- Medilodge of Capital Area
- Advantage Living Center Roseville
- Advantage Living Center Southgate
- King Nursing & Amp
- Hillsdale Co Medical Care Facility
- Beaconshire Nursing Center
- Baldwin Nursing and Rehabilitation Community
- Kalkaska Memorial Long Term Care
- Aspirus Ontonogan LTC
- Mission Point NSG & Physical Rehab Ctr of Lamont
- Grand Oaks Nursing Center
- Ambassador, A Villa Center
- Wellspring Lutheran Services
- The Lighthouse of Roscommon
MI nursing homes deemed compliant with infection control standards:
- Advantage Living Center – Battle Creek
- The Willows at Howell
- Dimondale Nursing Care Center
- The Heartland Healthcare Center – Three Rivers Nursing Home
- The Medilodge of Okemos
- The Wellbridge of Pinckney
- The Villa at the Bay Petoskey
- Munson Healthcare Otsego Memorial Hospital LTCU
- Regency at Whitmore Lake
- Medilodge of Greenview
- Medilodge of Holland
- Medilodge of Howell
- Laurels of Coldwater
- Medilodge of Ste Saint Marie
- Evergreen Manor
- Medilodge of Tawas City
- Plainwell Pines Nursing and Rehabilitation Community
- Lynwood Manor healthcare Nursing Home
- Gracewood Healthcare of Three Rivers
- Countryside Care Center Jackson, MI
- The Willows of East Lansing
- Hillcrest Nursing and Rehabilitation Community
- Vista Grande Villa – Jackson
- The Ovid Healthcare Center Nursing Home
- Grandvue Medical Care Facility – East Jordan
- Oakview Medical Care Facility – Ludington
- Isabella Co Medical Care Facility – Mount Pleasant
- Boulder Park Terrace – Charlevoix
- Hillsdale Hospital Mcguire and Macritchie LTCU Hillsdale
- Regency at Chene
- Samaritas Senior Living Cadillac
- The Light House of Hancock
- Autumn Wood of McBain
- Brittany Manor – Midland
- Canal View – Houghton County
- Paul Oliver Memorial Hospital LTC – Frankfort
- Medilodge of Hillman
- Medilodge of Clare
- Bishop NOA Home for Senior Citizens
- Manistee County Medical Care Facility
- Medilodge of Traverse City
- Christian Park Village (Escanaba)
- SKLD Ionia
- Medilodge of Munising
- Medilodge of Grand Traverse County
- Mackinaw Straits LTCU St. Ignace
- Medilodge of Alpena
- Mackinaw Straits LTCU
- Chippewa County War Memorial LTCU
- Orchard Grove Health Campus
- Medilodge of Rogers City
- Heritage Nursing and Rehabilitation Community
- Grand Traverse Pavilion
- Alpha Manor Nursing Home
- Transitional Health Services of Fremont
- Lourdes Rehabilitation & amp
- Medilodge Cheboygan
- Medilodge of Westwood
- Heritage Manor Nursing and Rehab CenterStratford Pines Nursing and Rehabilitation Center – Midland