According to reports, a caregiver was preparing the man’s meal at Parkview Healthcare Center when he reached for the burrito and put it in his mouth. When he began choking, the Heimlich maneuver was attempted but failed. Caregivers were then instructed to begin CPR, but before doing so, looked in the resident’s file to determine to see of there was a DNR (do not resuscitate) order. There was.
A doubtful nursing then called the man’s sister, telling her “your bother is turning black, do you want him revived?” When the sister responded “yes.” The DNR order was wrong. CPR was started. The man was pronounced dead approximately 30 minutes later. The fine was issued due to the nursing facility’s failure to provide “prompt emergency medical care” as requested by the resident.
This was the second time in recent months that the Department of Public Health has fined an Orange County nursing home for a choking death. In April, Palm Terrace Healthcare in Laguna Hills received a fine of $75,000 after a patient drowsy from morphine was given meat and choked to death in her room.