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L.A. nursing home fined $100,000 in patient's death

May 18, 2010 |  3:00 pm

State health regulators announced a $100,000 fine Tuesday against a Los Angeles nursing home for improperly administering a nasal feeding tube and causing the death of an 84-year-old patient.

Hancock Park Rehabilitation Center failed to follow policies and nursing procedures when it allowed a feeding tube to leak food into the man's lungs, a condition that led to the pneumonia that killed him in May 2008, according to a report by the California Department of Public Health.

The man was fed by a nasal tube while he recovered at the center from a fractured hip and prostate cancer, among other ailments.

He was admitted to a hospital emergency room with a nasal feeding tube in his lungs, prompting a complaint and an unannounced inspection of the center later that month.

The fine is the highest and most severe penalty under state laws regulating nursing homes.

-- Tony Barboza