In Georgia, the task force will focus on these counties:
Banks, Barrow, Bartow, Cantoosa, Carroll, Chattooga, Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, Coweta, Dade, Dawson, DeKalb, Douglas, Fannin, Fayette, Floyd, Forsyth, Fulton, Gilmer, Gordon, Gwinnett, Habersham, Hall, Haralson, Heard, Henry, Jackson, Lumpkin, Meriwether, Murray, Newton, Paulding, Pickens, Pike, Polk, Rabun, Rockdale, Spalding, Stephens, Towns, Troup, Union, Walker, White and Whitfield.
Among the Georgia nursing home horror stories in recent years was the case of Moran Lake Nursing Home in Rome, owned by George and Rhonda Houser of Sandy Springs. The state had inspected it several times over the years, but didn't shut it down until conditions became "barbaric."
George Houser was eventually sentenced to 20 years in federal prison for Medicare and Medicaid fraud. The case was the first where a nursing home operator was convicted of fraud because the services provided were worthless, giving the Justice Department a new way to prosecute those who swindle health plans for the poor, elderly and disabled, the AJC reported in 2012.
The federal government publishes a list of nursing homes that are under focus because of their history of serious quality issues. A recent list of homes that haven't improved, despite the special focus, includes Orchard View Rehabilitation & Skilled Nursing Center in Columbus, Ga. The list shows that among those homes improving is Cook Senior Living Center in Adel, Ga. Recently graduated from the special focus program is Pruitthealth - Virginia Park in Atlanta, after 18 months in the program.
UPDATE: Click here for information about nursing homes previously on the Special Focus list or go to this URL: http://investigations.blog.ajc.com/2014/10/06/theres-something-special-about-these-nursing-homes-and-its-a-worry/