With 81 nursing home locations, Centinela West is California's largest
provider of elder care facilities—but also one of its most troubled.
In a new lawsuit filed last month, the company and its owner are facing
new allegations of neglect and abuse, this time resulting in the death
of a resident.
As CBS News reports, Czersale Hilton has filed suit against the company following the 2014
death of her mother, Geneva. Geneva Hilton was admitted to Centinela Skilled
Nursing & Wellness Centre West in Inglewood only to pass away just
five weeks later. The doctors who treated her mother told Czersale Hilton
that they suspected elder neglect.
"I was shocked. Of course, I was shocked, because the last time I
spoke to my mom, she was herself," Czersale Hilton told reporters.
"So, something went on there. I am still not clear on what happened
over there." According to the lawsuit, Geneva Hilton had been admitted
to the center in good health. At the time of her death, however, she suffered
from dehydration, pneumonia, and a plummeting body temperature.
Centinela West's Prior Troubles
This is not the first time that Centinela West and its owner, noted Los
Angeles philanthropist Schlomo Rechnitz, have come under fire for reportedly
poor conditions in their facilities. Along with earning below-average
ratings from Medicare, the facilities were investigated by journalist
David Goldstein, who tracked millions of dollars in taxpayer Medicare
and Medi-Cal money to the company, but still found patients in poor, unsanitary
Both the California attorney general and the FBI have also tried to shut
Centinela West facilities down and reprimand Rechnitz for his "continued
and repeated refusals to comply with industry laws and regulations was
harming the skilled nursing industry," but have been unsuccessful.
As Patricia McGinnis of the California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform
points out: "Under his [Rechnitz's] particular company, we've
had more closures and more decertifications in such a short period of
time than any time that I can think of in the last 30 years."
If you believe that your elderly or disabled loved one has suffered neglect
or abuse at a Centinela West facility—or any other assisted living
facility—then the time to speak with counsel is now. At
Norman Taylor & Associates, our dedicated and aggressive California elder abuse attorneys are committed
to helping families seek justice these breaches of trust and are well-versed
in holding the responsible parties accountable for the wrong they have done.
Ready to start exploring your options during this difficult time? Our team
is ready to speak with you.
Call us at (888) 510-8619 today.