Evergreen case re-opened | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Evergreen case re-opened

by Susie Vasquez

An investigation into a complaint about the care of an 87-year-old man who died at Evergreen Mountain View Health Care in Carson City in December has been re-opened by the Nevada Bureau of Licensure and Certification.

The complaint from Annette Giovanetti about care of her father, Andy Gomez, had previously been dismissed as unsubstantiated due to a lack of evidence.

The investigation should take about 10 days, she said.

Kevin Kogan, regional manager for Evergreen, said the matter was fully investigated by the Bureau of Licensure and the complaint was found to be unsubstantiated.

Alan Baker, director of nursing at Mountain View, said discussing the case would be a violation of patient confidentiality.

Gomez lived at Mountain View for two years and had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, glaucoma and osteoporosis. He had broken his hip in a fall at Mountain View, but was otherwise physically strong when Giovanetti last visited him just before Thanksgiving, she said.

He was admitted to Carson-Tahoe Hospital’s emergency room Dec. 5 for hip pain. A Carson-Tahoe emergency-room physician found several previously undiagnosed problems, including pneumonia, a urinary-tract infection and dehydration, according to a hospital record provided by Giovanetti.

Gomez was transferred to Washoe Medical Center, where he stayed until he was transferred to a Reno nursing facility Dec. 20. He was not responding to treatment at that time, Giovanetti said, and died of heart failure Christmas Day.

Giovanetti filed a complaint against Mountain View with the Bureau of Health and Licensure on Dec. 17, citing malnutrition, dehydration and other care issues.

Six Evergreen patients died Dec. 9, allegedly of a flu-like illness. The Health Division and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta investigated the deaths. A bacteria known as Group A Beta Strep and an influenza virus were isolated from some of the patients, but no single causative agent or organism was named.

Nursing home costs

Andy Gomez was charged $4,123 per month in April of 2003 for care at Mountain View. In June of 2003 costs rose to $4,216 and in September 2003, his costs rose to $5,425.

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