Problems for Hillcrest continue
By Janet Lundquist email@example.com May 14, 2012 9:32PM
Updated: June 16, 2012 8:11AM
Administrators for a troubled Joliet nursing home are set to meet with state health department officials next month over the department’s move to pull its operating license.
In a separate action, the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will terminate Hillcrest Nursing and Rehabilitation Center’s Medicare provider agreement effective Tuesday, prompted by a history of “multiple serious deficiencies.”
The CMS scheduled an involuntary termination of the agreement for the nursing home, located at 777 Draper Ave. in Joliet, after investigations found resident-to-resident sexual abuse had occurred and that the facility was not adequately monitoring administration of controlled substances, said CMS Spokeswoman Elizabeth Surgener.
Once the agreement is terminated, the facility will not be eligible for federal funding, which often poses an operational problem for nursing homes, said Illinois Department of Public Health Spokeswoman Melaney Arnold.
Hillcrest Administrator Alice Olujimi could not be reached for comment Monday.
The IDPH filed a notice for license revocation for Hillcrest on April 11.
Hillcrest officials have requested a hearing on the revocation, Arnold said. A status hearing is scheduled for June 5, and the matter could be settled or proceed to a hearing, she said.
In April, the IDPH investigated complaints from 10 out of 16 residents who were transferred out of Hillcrest between March 17 and 23. The state found residents were transferred without regard to their preference of facility.
The IDPH currently has a monitor in the facility to ensure any transfers are completed appropriately, Arnold said.
One resident is quoted in a state report as saying: “All the residents were told (Hillcrest) was closing. We were told it was because of (a resident alleged to have sexually and physically assaulted 23 residents) ... and funding problems. They said the facility ... did something very wrong and everyone had to go.”
A separate IDPH investigation found that between May and October, a 26-year-old male Hillcrest resident sexually, physically or mentally abused at least 23 other residents.
Residents told investigators the man exposed himself and assaulted male and female residents, threatening to “come back with a gun” if they reported the incidents.