Hospice of Saint John in bankruptcy

7:09 PM, Jan 9, 2014   |    comments
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KUSA - 9Wants To Know has learned that creditors have forced Hospice of Saint John into bankruptcy.

This comes after a 9Wants to Know investigation in November exposed how the hospice failed to properly care for patients and failed to pass-through certain Medicaid payments to other providers.

According to court records, the initial petition was filed on Dec. 13 as a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case, but it has been converted to a Chapter 11. The documents list at least 20 unpaid creditors including a pharmacy, a medical supply company, and several nursing homes. The total amount owed is more than $1 million. A meeting of creditors is scheduled for Feb. 5.

9Wants to Know also visited the Hospice of Saint John property in Lakewood Thursday to find the blinds drawn and no one in the office. A call to the hospice's bankruptcy attorney was not returned.

After three decades in operation, Hospice of Saint John closed at the end of August. State regulators had found lapses in care to dying patients, and they determined the hospice did not have the financial resources to continue. The decision came after months of staff layoffs and operational cutbacks.

It's still not entirely clear what drove the non-profit into financial ruin. The CEO had blamed higher medical costs combined with lower Medicare reimbursement amounts due to federal sequestration.

Colorado's Department of Health Care Policy and Financing is still reviewing whether the hospice followed proper procedures in distributing Medicaid payments. 

(KUSA-TV © 2014 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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