Pacifica Companies’ Kei-Ai Los Angeles Skilled-Nursing Facility Leads LA County in COVID-19 Cases and Deaths

Kei-Ai Skilled Nursing Facilities in Gardena, and Lincoln Heights

Save Our Seniors (SOS) calls for an immediate cease of transfers/moves/evictions of residents from all former Keiro Nursing and Retirement Homes facilities during the pandemic. Pacifica Companies needs to demonstrate more transparency as to why the COVID-19 numbers at the Kei-Ai facilities are so high in Lincoln Heights and Gardena.

California Department of Public Health – Skilled Nursing Facilities COVID-19

Between the two Kei-Ai Facilities, in Lincoln Heights and Gardena, there have been 111 deaths, 94 in Lincoln Heights alone. What is going on at the Kei-Ai Los Angeles SNF? Why has there been no open communication with the residents and families?

Pacifica Companies has been issued multiple citations for violations since 2018 at both the Kei-Ai South Bay and Kei-Ai Los Angeles facilities.

From 2018 until 2020 the two Pacifica facilities had a combined 259 complaints and incidents, exceeding the state average.

125 had some merit but did not necessarily result in a “deficiency”.  Nine resulted in enforcement actions, the most serious types.

• The first requirement for SNFs applying to become Covid-19 SNFs is that they cannot have serious patient care violations in the 24 month period prior to application. Pacifica failed this requirement. (See page 17 of the Los Angeles County Office of the Inspector General (LAC OIG) First Interim Report).

• Moreover, Pacifica failed to properly notify all families and residents of their Covid-19 SNF status and they have not posted public notices so stating, as required by law.

What were their motivations for applying for becoming a COVID-19 designated SNF? Where is the oversight to assess whether or not proper safety protocols have been taken? What accountability is there for whether or not appropriate staffing exists to provide necessary safety for all residents? Why have some families been reporting under-staffing and hiring of unskilled interns to provide patient care?

Search CADPH: Kei-Ai Los Angeles Healthcare Center:

178 complaints/incidents

68 had “deficiencies” some level of violation

3 -resulted in enforcement actions

Search CADPH: Kei-Ai South Bay Healthcare Center:

81 complaints/incidents

60 had “deficiencies”/some level of violation

6-resulted in enforcement actions

Facilities with numerous, recent citations for deficiencies and violations within the past two years (and beyond) should not be given a COVID-19 designation.

For the safety of current residents, Pacifica Companies’ designation must be revoked.

While the high numbers of deaths relative to other Skilled Nursing facilities are disconcerting enough, there are indications that Pacifica Companies may be contemplating the transfer of residents out of the Sakura Intermediate Care Facility in Boyle Heights to the Lincoln Heights SNF. Their plans to convert the Sakura ICF into high-rent housing have been submitted to the Boyle Heights Neighborhood Planning and Land Use Committee in September of 2020.

Many suspect that such transfers would be a means to facilitate the conversion of the ICF and appease those finding the word “eviction” distasteful, as technically. In this scenario, the SNF would be a “new home,” though representing a dramatic reduction in quality of life (e.g., residents at the ICF have their own apartment, patients at the SNF share rooms with up to five other patients). To move seniors from the ICF to the Lincoln Heights facility in the middle of a pandemic, while COVID-19 deaths are high, would be an extremely dangerous proposition for a segment of the population that is already “high risk.”

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