For Immediate Release:
December 8, 2022
Contact: Jerri Mares – (505) 321-4372
LAS VEGAS– Today, New Mexico Attorney General Hector Balderas announced a state lawsuit against the Alta Vista Regional Medical Center in Las Vegas, New Mexico (“Alta Vista”) and its owner Quorum Health Corporation. The suit brought under the New Mexico Unfair Practices Act, as well as other state laws, alleges that Alta Vista has routinely advertised services which it could not perform, or which it could only perform in a substandard manner including, but not limited to: OB/GYN services, Pediatric Services, Surgical Services, ER services, Respiratory Therapy Services, Post-Operative Care, and various other medical testing services. Rather than ensure that it has a fully staffed team of care providers and management, as well as proper advertising, Alta Vista has purportedly mismanaged funding and resources to the detriment of the community it is meant to serve.
“New Mexicans must receive quality medical care without being forced to drive hours away to alternate facilities, and my office will take the necessary steps to ensure a more permanent solution to benefit patients,” said Attorney General Balderas.
The State’s complaint alleges that following the resignation of the entire Medical Executive Committee at Alta Vista, procedures were not properly adhered to in refilling those positions leaving the hospital with no designated oversight of its medical operations. This directly contributed to Alta Vista being unable to provide a significant amount of services to the community including even the most basic janitorial services to ensure the facility is kept clean—especially in an instance where a terminal clean is necessary (cleaning following care of a patient with an infectious disease—such as COVID-19).
Despite not providing the care it advertises in the community, Alta Vista allegedly charges exorbitant amounts to its patients and then sues those that cannot pay. It is further alleged that despite being aware of the management and care issues at Alta Vista, its owner—Quorum Health—has failed or refused to take action to correct the problems occurring at Alta Vista.
The suit seeks a preliminary and permanent injunction barring Alta Vista from engaging in advertising for services it does not provide and against Alta Vista engaging in unconscionable billing practices. The suit further seeks civil penalties, restitution, and other fees and costs.