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New boss at veterans’ home

According to a page on their website, the Nevada Department of Veterans Services has hired a new administrator to be in charge of the Southern Nevada State Veterans’ Home, located in Boulder City.

Jeni Fuller, a resident of Henderson with experience running other skilled nursing facilities, is now listed as the administrator. She would be replacing Steven Pavlow, who was the administrator between April of 2023 and February of 2024 when he was reportedly put on administrative leave.

Despite multiple requests for confirmation of Pavlow’s status, both NDVS and the state attorney general’s office have failed to provide info. A request made earlier this year to NDVS was initially denied and, after it was pointed out that this information is public record, referred to the AG’s office. That office has never confirmed receiving the information request and has failed to provide any answers to requests for information.

Pavlow’s status came into question after a week-long inspection of the home in January resulted in the facility being cited for numerous issues by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) ranging from employees not being able to open locked gates in case of a need to evacuate to food not served at proper temperature to verbal abuse of a patient.

The abuse citation was specifically made against Pavlow.

Despite the appearance of a change in leadership, according to the licensing website operated by the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services, the facility is still operating under Pavlow’s license. (Skilled nursing facilities must have a licensed administrator on-site and in charge. All SNFs operate under the license of an individual license holder.)

According to her LinkedIn page, Fuller was the CEO of Kindred Healthcare. However, according to a database that uses CMS data, she has not been associated with Kindred (A 108-bed SNF in Las Vegas) since 2021. Instead, it shows her as a managing employee of Life Care Center of South Las Vegas, a 120-bed SNF with a three-star CMS rating.

The change caps a year and a half of turmoil for the veterans’ home. Former administrator Eli Quinones was dismissed without explanation in November of 2022 and was temporarily replaced by Shawn Swilley until Pavlow was hired in March of 2023.

Former Director of Nursing Poppy Helgren retired early in August of 2023 and says she was pushed out by NDVS leadership.

NDVS Director Fred Wager was dismissed by Governor Joe Lombardo late last year and Mark McBride, a former administrator of the home in BC, who left shortly before a lawsuit resulted in a more than $700,000 settlement over the death of a patient, was rehired as a deputy director to be in charge of both the BC facility and the veterans’ home, located in Northern Nevada.

Requests for interviews with McBride and Mary Devine, who was named as the new NDVS director in March, have gone unanswered.

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