Justice Dept. accuses Erlanger nursing home of collecting on ‘worthless services;’ suit is first of its kind in Kentucky

The U.S. Justice Department has filed a civil complaint against Villaspring Health Care and Rehabilitation in Erlanger and its parent company, Carespring Health Care Management, claiming they “billed Medicare and Medicaid for services purportedly provided to its residents despite knowing that the services were so inadequate that they were essentially worthless,” Valarie Honeycutt Spears of the Lexington Herald-Leader reports.
The complaint was the first in Kentucky alleging that a nursing home violated the federal False Claims Act. “Today’s filing represents an important milestone in the effort to ensure effective care for Medicare and Medicaid recipients in long-term care facilities,” U.S. Attorney Kerry Harvey said.
The list of allegations include failures to follow physicians’ orders, treat wounds and pressure sores, update resident care plans, give enough to drink, give regular baths and monitor diabetics’ blood-sugar levels, Spears reports. The complaint alleges there were numerous injuries and at least five deaths from 2004 to 2008 due to improper care.

Officials of the nursing home officials invited journalists to tour the facility and denied any wrongdoing. “We do not feel that the government’s case has any merit, and we will defend ourselves vigorously,” Carespring spokeswoman Kim Majick said. “Villaspring has consistently provided high-quality care to the residents of Kenton County and looks forward to doing so in the future.” (Read more)
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