Los Angeles County failed in investigating nursing homes, state says

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The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health did not follow standard policies pertaining to nursing home inspections, according to a review released by the state Department of Health.

In one case, the department failed to investigate a case of Immediate Jeopardy, and two other cases with serious allegations also were not looked into, the California Department of Public Health said.

The department's chief deputy director said Thursday the county agreed with recommendations made in the report, and added that there is already tighter oversight, more training and better use of data, Kaiser Health News reported.

The department came under scrutiny when a county audit found it had a backlog of thousands of complaints, and that there were more than 3,000 open investigations as of March 14.

The state conducted a review following questions raised by Kaiser Health News and the Los Angeles News Group about a policy in which inspectors were closing the backlog of cases without investigations. The June 1 report was released after a Freedom of Information Act request.

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