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Date:8/22/2008

15 Wash. Skilled Nursing Facilities Hit With Class Action Lawsuit

SEATTLE, Aug. 22, /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A class action lawsuit (Case #08-2-28645-2KNT), was filed today in King County Superior Court against Milwaukee-based Extendicare Homes, Inc., Fir Lane Terrace Convalescent Center, Inc. and its 15 long-term skilled nursing facilities in the state of Washington [see list by city at end of release] on behalf of Howard Steele as the personal representative for the estate of Lee Ann Steele and on behalf of all Washington citizens who resided in one of the company's Washington facilities from July 1, 2004 through July 1, 2008.

"Extendicare facilities sound warm and fuzzy on paper. The type of place that you would want your parents or grandparents to be if they needed care you couldn't provide them yourself," says Long Beach, Calif., plaintiff attorney Stephen M. Garcia of The Garcia Law Firm. "The reality is that these facilities have a long record of excessive and repeated citations by the Washington Department of Social and Health Services for providing substandard care and care that violates the rights of residents."

As an example, Garcia points to Franklin Hills Health & Rehabilitation Center in Spokane that was found by the WDSHS to have an astounding 35 notices of deficiencies in 2007 and 30 notices of deficiencies in 2006. It should be noted, Garcia points out, that the Washington state-wide average number of deficiencies was nine during those years.

The complaint, filed by The Garcia Law Firm of Long Beach, Calif., and Stritmatter, Kessler, Whelan, Coluccio of Seattle, Wash., alleges that Extendicare tells the public and prospective clients that it is operated in such a way that it meets the needs of its elderly and vulnerable adult residents by providing a certain standard of care. The complaint contends that in spite of the claims made on Extendicare's websites and in its brochures and in other promotional materials,
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SOURCE The Garcia Law Firm
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