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Laguna Honda resident discharges paused, facility closure pushed back to November

PIX Now 09:15

SAN FRANCISCO -- San Francisco health officials on Monday announced that residents at Laguna Honda will have their Medicare/Medicaid payments extended another two months to Nov. 13. 

Officials said there would be a pause in all transfers and discharges during the extension for a more "humane and compassionate path forward."

The information on the extension was issued in a joint statement from the city's Department of Public Health and the San Francisco City Attorney. 

"As we continue to work together, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is extending the availability of Medicare and Medicaid payments by lengthening the term of Laguna Honda's closure plan by two months," the statement read.  

The San Francisco Department of Public Health's tweet thanked a number of public officials including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senator Diane Feinstein and San Francisco Mayor London Breed for their support. Pelosi applauded the extension in a tweet, saying that continued funding would allow the hospital to remain open "without the trauma of transferring residents, ensuring that patients will continue receiving the care they need."

Earlier this month, the city of San Francisco sued the federal government over its decision to cut off funding to the hospital and the order forcing the nursing home to transfer all patients out of the facility by Sept. 13.

The lawsuit was filed against the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Secretary Xavier Becerra. It alleges that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), which operates under HHS, forced the City to implement an unworkable closure and patient transfer plan that put them at risk and denies the City due process. 

In April, CMS terminated Laguna Honda's participation in its Medicare/Medicaid programs after the hospital was found out of compliance on multiple safety inspections, including finding contraband like drug paraphernalia on site, and failure to adhere to hand hygiene, documentation and infection prevention protocols. 

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