Fremont Care Center Fraudulently Dismisses Patient from Facility
Garcia & Artigliere filed a lawsuit against Windsor Country Drive Care Center for elder abuse, financial abuse, negligence, negligent hiring, and supervision. The lawsuit alleges that the facility neglected patient Mark Sandholdt and wrote a letter to his insurance provider fraudulently stating that he was refusing treatment, which led to the provider discontinuing his insurance coverage.
“During the course of Mark’s stay at the facility, staff ignored his known needs and wrongfully withheld required care,” said Attorney Stephen Garcia. “They fraudulently accused Mark of refusing treatment, therefore causing his insurance provider to discontinue his coverage. They then continued to harass him about money he did not owe.”
On September 21, 2015, Mr. Sandholdt was transferred to Windsor Country Drive Care Center for rehabilitation and physical therapy after a fall that had resulted in a fractured fibia and tibia, and for which he had required surgery. At the time of his admission, Mr. Sandholdt suffered from diabetes and nerve damage. He had a history of falls, a cast on his right leg, and required assistance with all activities of daily living. It was anticipated that Mr. Sandholdt would only be at the facility for a short period of time before returning home.
Upon Mr. Sandholdt’s admission, staff was aware that his physician had ordered physical therapy for him. During his initial period of residency, Mr. Sandholdt was provided with physical therapy once a day to his upper body, and then while in his wheelchair. On January 11, 2016, the cast on his right leg was removed and replaced with a leg brace. However, the staff applied the brace with so much force and tightness that Mr. Sandholdt developed a fully avoidable pressure ulcer on his leg.
In February 2016, the facility placed Mr. Sandholdt on a new physical therapy machine. During his first session on it, Mr. Sandholdt was able to take 17 steps. However, during his second session, Mr. Sandholdt was accompanied by a staff member who was improperly trained and who tightened his belt too tightly, breaking off his catheter.
Recognizing that they had caused horrible injury to Mr. Sandholdt, the facility conjured up a story to conceal their misconduct and also formulated a plan to get rid of him. Their efforts were so pervasive that staff members wrote a fraudulent letter to Mr. Sandholdt’s insurance provider stating that he was refusing physical therapy and was not making progress and that he was therefore more suitable for “outpatient therapy.”
After receiving the facility’s fraudulent letter, Mr. Sandholdt’s insurance provider discontinued his insurance coverage, refusing to continue paying for his residency at Windsor Country Drive Care Center.
With the facility’s fraudulent scheme to rid themselves of Mr. Sandholdt coming to fruition, the facility approached him, saying that if he did not write them a check for $40,000 they would throw him out. The facility continued to repeat this threat, causing Mr. Sandholdt great anxiety and anguish.
Later, on March 9, 2016, the facility called Mr. Sandholdt’s wife and told her that if they did not receive $17,000 from them in two days, Mr. Sandholdt would need to leave the facility.
On March 11, 2016, Mr. Sandholdt was discharged from the facility. The next day, a home health physician examined Mr. Sandholdt and confirmed that he did not require mere “custodial care” as the facility had falsely reported, but instead required a higher level of care.
As a result of the fraudulent misrepresentation, Windsor Country Drive Care Center made to Mr. Sandholdt’s insurance company, which resulted in the cancellation of his coverage, he can only afford home health care once a week and his wife has to care for him personally at home. In addition, he is still suffering and recuperating from the injuries he sustained at the facility.