8News has uncovered that Canterbury Rehabilitation & Healthcare Center was cited for health violations prior to the recent coronavirus outbreak. Federal inspection reports show Canterbury Rehab, in Henrico, received an overall “below average” rating from federal inspectors. The inspection was conducted in October 2019 and the center was under different management at the time. Still, inspectors cited the facility for several health violations.
During the health inspection component, the facility received one star out of five, which is labeled as “much below average.” According to records from CMS, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid, the facility received 23 citations. The report shows that is above the average number of health citations for a facility of its kind in Virginia. The citations ranged from failing to provide respiratory care to staffing shortages.
Based on a survey sample, federal inspectors found the facility failed to maintain sufficient nursing staff. The inspection report also found Canterbury failed to have registered nurse coverage for a 24-hour period in September of last year.
Inspectors also cited the long-term care facility for abuse and neglect for failing to immediately report an allegation of sexual abuse. A caregiver at the facility was convicted last month of raping a 72-year-old woman inside the rehab center.
Canterbury tells 8News that since this report, there have been improvements and changes in leadership. They said in a statement:
“The Canterbury team is comprised of talented professionals – ranging from long-standing employees to more recent additions – who are doing an incredible job in the face of an unprecedented situation. In the months prior to the COVID -19 pandemic, there were significant improvements in virtually every aspect of operations including review and upgrade of all policies and procedures and there were also significant changes in facility leadership. There has been material focus on placing the right people in the right positions, and a significant influx of new protocols prior to the outbreak. Any reference to the fall 2019 CMS report as an indicator of current conditions at Canterbury would be inappropriate.”
Dr. Jim Wright, Chief Medical Director at Canterbury Rehabilitation, admits understaffing is an issue. He says that’s why the facility received the overall below average rating.
In the meantime, Governor Ralph Northam announced a task force to work with long-term care facilities vulnerable to COVID-19, like Canterbury Rehab.
“Every person in assisted living and long-term care is someone’s parent or loved one. It is vital that we protect them,” said Northam.
The task force will work with the state’s nursing homes and long-term care facilities to make sure they have PPE (personal protective equipment), testing and cleaning supplies.
“They need testing and PPE, and the staff are overworked,” the Governor said.
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