Home Nurse Facilities COVID-19 Bay Area: 76 Nursing Facilities Did Not Meet Staffing Requirements; 25 are in Alameda County

COVID-19 Bay Area: 76 Nursing Facilities Did Not Meet Staffing Requirements; 25 are in Alameda County

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) — 76 Bay Area nursing facilities have failed to meet staffing requirements mandated by federal law, but the ABC7 I-Team found the problem was only worsen in a county.

“He should have seen his grandson graduate in December,” Scott Akrie said of mourning the loss of his father. “My parents were about a month away from their 65th wedding anniversary.”

RELATED: 10th confirmed COVID-19 death at Gateway care home in Hayward

Costell Akrie died of COVID-19 just three weeks after being temporarily admitted to Gateway Care and Rehabilitation Center in Hayward.

“They were so understaffed that no one could come into his room to give him the phone,” he said. “The phone would ring and ring and ring…we’d call the nurses’ station. Until we gave up.”

During the last five days of her father’s life, Akrie could not speak to him.

“We never even said goodbye to each other.”

According to an ABC7 analysis of payroll data, Gateway Care & Rehabilitation Center is one of 25 nursing facilities in Alameda County that failed to meet staffing standards in the last quarter of 2019. Under federal law, registered nurses are required to report at least eight consecutive years. hours. But, there were more than 500 cases of underreporting at the county’s 25 facilities between October and December last year. Most in the Bay Area.

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To put things into perspective, 21 facilities had registered nurses who did not report any hours. It is unclear if these employees simply did not show up for work or if other reasons led to the under-reporting. Gateway was one of 21 facilities.

“People who came in to work had 20 to 25 patients they were caring for,” Akrie said.

The ABC7 I-Team has contacted the property but has not yet received a response. In April, the I-Team obtained text messages from Gateway owners Prima and Anthony Thekkek. One text read: “We need Certified Personnel and CNAs at Gateway immediately. What can you all do to help?”

VIDEO: Families threaten legal action after loved ones die of COVID-19 at Hayward nursing home

But, according to our analysis, Gateway’s staff shortage was a problem long before April. The facility failed to meet the state’s minimum staffing score on multiple occasions in 2019. An issue that should have been reported and enforced by the California Department of Public Health.

ABC7 contacted the state agency by phone.

Stephanie“Why doesn’t your team identify those facilities that are clearly below minimum requirements?”

In a statement, a spokesperson for the agency wrote: “In addition to routine inspections, CDPH regularly conducts staffing audits at health care facilities across the state to ensure they are meeting minimum staffing standards, where applicable, of 3, 5 hours of nursing care per patient day, of which 2.4 hours are provided by certified practical nurses. . Staffing audits pull staffing data for 24 sample dates to determine compliance. If the facility fails to meet the staffing standard, the CDPH issues an administrative sanction. If the establishment is non-compliant for 5-49% of the days audited, the penalty is $15,000; if the establishment fails to meet the requirements by 50% or more of the days audited, the penalty is $30,000. »

The CDPH declined our interview request. But ABC7 will continue to follow the agency to see why the following installs went unreported.

“It’s perfectly part of the job they should be doing,” said Tony Chicotel, attorney for the California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform. “I actually think it would save them a lot of time. It’s a great way to turn publicly available data into a dashboard for facilities that need help.”

Facilities like Gateway – where 65 people have tested positive for COVID-19 and more than a dozen residents have died as a result of the outbreak. Now families want change to happen.

“He always had a cause in his life, the irony is he left us one,” Akrie said. “Our goal is to make sure this doesn’t happen again.”

Check out more stories from Dan Noyes and the ABC7 News I-Team.

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