Villa Rancho Bernardo Care Center cited, fined after man's choking death

Facility did not follow chopped food order

SAN DIEGO - A local care facility was penalized by the state after the choking death of a resident.

The California Department of Public Health announced Villa Rancho Bernardo Care Center received a Class AA citation -- the most severe penalty under state law -- and was fined $100,000 for "inadequate care that resulted in the death" of the 61-year-old man.

According to the CDPH, a physician's orders called for the man to be only served chopped food.

However, on the morning he died, the man was served two pancakes and two uncut sausage patties, which he put in his mouth all at once.

The man subsequently choked and was pronounced dead a short time later.

The CDPH noted the facility has reviewed its procedures with employees and re-educated them on regulations in light of the death.

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