De Groot nursing home closing

September 25, 2014

de groot homeCalifornia health officials have determined that the de Groot nursing home for children in San Luis Obispo no longer qualifies to receive Medi-Cal program payments. Its provider agreement ends Oct. 8.

After 23 years in business, the state said it was going to require structural changes such as solid walls and separate bathing facilities in a 94 page report generated after a state check of the home this summer. The facility is primarily open space where caregivers can easily monitor multiple children.

Though Sjany de Groot, 86, will be forfeiting the home’s license, she will continue to care for three of the five children currently at the home. Along with her daughter Wendy, de Groot has guardianship over those three children.

De Groot will utilize money from her savings, Social Security and a pension from her native country of Holland to care for the remaining children.



  1. womanwhohasbeenthere says:

    I have known Sjany deGroot since the early 1980s when she was still in the Laguna Lake area. I was mentioned in her book, I Will Never Give Up. I ran interference for her many times in my previous employment.

    She and her family have done wonders for these children. The community rallied around her many times, which is why in part, she has been able to stay in business so long. But since she takes Medi-Cal to pay for her services, all the good she does is meaningless. The government gives her money, ergo she must do things its way or else…which is really sad. But if she didn’t take Medi-Cal, I believe these kids would end up in much worse situations. So it’s a lose-lose situation.

    Sjany, you are an incredible humanitarian and asset to San Luis Obispo. My heart aches for you. Your children love you and so do I.

  2. agag1 says:

    94 pages of pure mumbo, jumbo bureaucratic CRAP!

    Everything we need to know about this can be said in ONE sentence…

    These children are loved, and well cared for. PERIOD

    I am so disgusted by this that my donation will be going in the mail shortly. This woman is an angel and deserves our support.

  3. agag1 says:

    Further proof that common sense is gone,
    and we have lost our ever-loving minds.

    Absolutely government at it’s worst!

  4. Rich in MB says:

    I’m from the Government and I’m here to help.
    And many of you hate the Tea Party…ha ha ha…its the Tea Party attitude that will save this Country from the Government that is crushing the people and their freedoms.

  5. SLOBIRD says:

    I am sure that with a 94 page write up we are talking about a lot more than a few walls. Where are all the people that have supported the De Groots in the pass… Dr. Bravo, Mr. Katcho said he was going to talk with the State, lots of people I stepped forward in the past, where are you now. 94 pages of fixes and and substandard conditions it a lot and they need your help. How many years has the State turned a blind eye to these conditions. According to the Tribune, it has been years since denture check ups and doctors have been to the home. It takes a lot more than love to provide for these special need children.

    Before everyone jumps on me, I have a niece in a Special Home in Baldwin Park. EVERY six months a complete evaluation, assessment, and status report is done on her. She is blind, has celebral palsy with no motor skills, has been confined to a wheelchair her whole life, has extremely limited communication skills, cannot feed herself and yet is extremely well cared for. She has a dental appointments annually, physicials, nutritional, physical and occupation therapist weekly, outings, etc. Special needs children must be monitored and assessed by many people in the course of the bi-annual checkups to make sure all is OK and everyone is doing their job and that some type of improvement is progressing. This may be just a giggle, but it is an improvement. I know of what I speak since I am her guardian!

    • r0y says:

      You must not be familiar with government communications. Whole careers are built and dependent upon mostly needless paperwork. Ninety-Four pages does not necessarily mean lots of violations. Also, many “violations” are often just changes in the bureaucracy – that is, what is *now* acceptable or minimum.

      In all likelihood, it was 94 pages of crap that the home either had to renovate and remodel at significant cost, or close its doors. Without reading the report, it will be hard to say; however, many times I’ve seen correction citations issued that any reasonable-thinking person would realize is essentially a game-ender.

      Thickness of walls, separate bathing facilities, etc. all sound “nice and safe” to the ninnies that run things, but the reality is, this has been in existence without incident (that I know of) for many years. Why all of a sudden?

      The lesson here is, as always, if you take that government carrot, get ready for the government stick. That is, as soon as you take a dime, they’ll tell you how you can and cannot run your facility. Ask hospitals, doctors, pharmacies, etc. It is not a pretty picture. Many, who can afford it, simply stop taking medicare/medical because of that.

      • SLOBIRD says:

        Whatever you say, Roy. I am sure you have spend lots of time and involvement in these homes.

        Nice people are not without fault!

        I am done, have a nice day!

    • nurse1 says:

      SLOBIRD, and what a great guardian you are! Having her stuck in a home in Baldwin Park. Pretty much says it all.

    • nurse1 says:

      Yes SLOBIRD, you are up here in SLO County monitoring her care in Baldwin Park. Pretty much says it all. Unless you are spending time daily in a facility, they can tell you all kinds of great things that are being done.Much like convalescent homes it takes bi-weekly surprise visits at the least, to monitor whether patients are indeed receiving QUALITY care. I sincerely hope that your niece is indeed receiving the care she deserves.

  6. taxpayer says:

    I defy anyone who has ever visited this home to tell me that these children aren’t being loved and well taken care of. The fact is that Sjany is the closest thing to a saint and these children are the closest things to angels that exist in the City of San Luis Obispo. What is being done to them is criminal and a sin against everything decent.

  7. achillesheal says:

    I work about a block away from the De Groot facility. Nearly every day I see people pushing kids in wheelchairs, taking them for a walk, and the kids are happy.

    They will receive standardized care in whatever state facility to which they are transferred. It’s pretty much a guarantee that they will stop receiving love from their caregivers.

    That’s the tragedy. Not the thickness of the walls.

    • nurse1 says:

      So sad, a community the size of Cayucos can rally and save a pier but our county can not rally and save a home that has helped children for over 30 years. What a sad state of affairs. Thinking if we did not have such a WORTHLESS BOS in this county things would be different. God bless Mrs. De Groot and thank you for all that you have done.

      • MajorityFan says:

        Lead the charge, Nurse. Organize a fundraiser.

        • nurse1 says:

          If you must know “Majority Fan” I have donated my time FREE of charge since I have been in SLO County at The De Groot home. Up until I got my PA license (a little over 3 months ago) I have regularly put in hours there when able. (over a 21 year time frame) and you MF? what have you done to help? You seem to to have an exuberant amount of time sitting behind your computer.

          • agag1 says:

            Go nurse! And don’t forget to tell him to get his a** back to work while you’re at it!

          • MajorityFan says:

            Always on the defensive. My comment was meant that because of your position you would have access to the medical community to find a way to help out the De Groots. Since you have the longevity in your career it would be great to have you lead. Though I do not always agree with your point of view, I truly meant my comment about a fundraiser to keep the De Groot facility going.

            BTW, I have worked in healthcare communication for 38 years, working to make employees know that their “free” insurance is paid by their employer and part of their hidden paycheck. I was reluctantly contracted to introduce COBRA in the mid 1980s, a great safety net for those losing their jobs, but also one of the first incentives to make the employees realize that they could shop around for healthcare. The blessing that COBRA was so expensive it made people learn to shop around and do comparisons of benefits.

            The ACA, aka Romneycare before it was labeled Obamacare, is good. The more people that are insured, become involved in preventive care, is a good thing. The not so good about ACA, the president had to let go of the power of the insurance companies to get it passed by the GOP congress. The fact that people can get medical plans with preconditions will actually lower the long term healthcare costs.

            Getting your PA license was a huge accomplishment. Please use it wisely and look long term. Getting mine in 1999 was a milestone, and making patient care my personal goal was a gift.

  8. diamond says:

    If anyone deserved the help of the community it was the de Groot nursing home. Every day our regulators become the problem instead of the solution. The state will remove severely disabled children from a loving, secure, caring home to be sent to who knows where. Just collateral damage from paper pushes who routinely put children into foster homes where they often fall through the proverbial cracks. Sorry to see that Cal Poly couldn’t adopt this cause as they did with Duvall sober living facility. These children have zero choices in a life. A life that already has given them the short straw.

    • SLOBIRD says:

      While I agree with most of your statements, I have to say that there are standards that other care facilities comply with and because we like a good local facility we should not be throwing out these regulations. I think this is an emotional cause for this care facility because we have a local doctor, many local organizations, politicians and individuals that have been behind this wonderful woman and her facility. BUT, there are standards and regulations that all facilities have to abide to in a fair and unbiased society. If I read the reports on this correctly this has been an ongoing issue for some with this facility and I think the time has just run out and she must now abide.

      Remember, while this is a great facility, this was the De Groot business and lots of money was made in caring for these children by Medi-Cal, Social Security, Lawsuit Settllements, etc. You only need to look at the facility and know that it has been successful.

      I think as a society we are fortunate to have people like the De Groot’s but they are a part of our society and must play, work and live by the same rules as the rest of society.

      • diamond says:

        SLOBIRD, A fair and unbiased society is itself an oxymoron. Yes, regulation is necessary. The obvious problem is our incompetent government ignores common sense. The questions that should be asked? Are they well cared for? Are they in danger? Have you been to a NICU or ICU? The space is usually completely open. You claim, “lots of money was made in caring for these children”. I guarantee you, if Mrs. De Groot was making boatloads of money, as you claim, these upgrades would already be done. Money would fix the problem wouldn’t it? If you think that someone who cares for the disabled like Granny DeGroot has, for a quarter of a century, is in for the money, I challenge you to take care of one disabled child for just one day. And, despite the state pulling her funding, she is still going to care for three of the five children. This is nothing but bureaucratic red tape. Throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

        • nurse1 says:

          Diamond, I agree with you! : )

          • MajorityFan says:

            So you agree with not meeting standards? I would hate to be one of your patients. Do you reuse hypodermic needles?

            • achillesheal says:

              The state changes standards, and forces businesses to meet the new standards regardless df cost or common sense.

              Now that the state runs medical care, I don’t believe any of us will like the standards when we are 80 and need a hip replacement at the government hospital. A beaurocracies will determine that money is better spent on welfare queens in Compton or building tent cities for illegal alien children.

            • GoneBabyGone says:

              Get a grip! Standards change, that’s an accepted fact! But generally those standards change over a period of time with inspections taking place in a timely and scheduled manner so those affected by them can update in a cost effective manner…. Coming to DeGroot after not being inspected for how long(?) and then expecting her to comply all at once is ridiculous and sounds like California is trying to save money from another wrong place!

              • achillesheal says:

                I work in the highly regulated financial industry.

                New Regulations seem to change monthly and we have to be in compliance immediately. Our account opening forms have been updated 3 times this year thusfar to add ticky tack nonsense.

                No one can possibly be in compliance with every regulation that is coming down the pike, particularly with Dodd-Frank (two crooks by the way). That gives the government officials the leverage to shut you down if they please.

                It’s wrong.

            • nurse1 says:

              I would discuss the matter with you MF, if you had a CLUE about standards and the industry.

              • MajorityFan says:

                My clue started many years ago in healthcare reform, back when it was too much employer dictated and driving up the costsl

            • agag1 says:

              Normally I would never be in favor of reusing needles, but I would be willing to make a special exception for you MF.

      • flytrap says:

        The problem with your faith in the regulations as being the “best for the patient” and “done in the best interest of their health” is false. Many of the regulations have been promulgated upon the public by special interest groups and many of them are contradictory, unnecessary, and just plain wrong. The current political group that controls Sacramento has an implicit goal of “the more regulations the better” under the guise of improving quality no matter how onerous, expensive, and difficult it is to comply with these new regulations. Eg. how important is increasing privacy by constructing a solid wall when the patient is blind and deaf, when they are using other room dividers instead? How important is it to install an extra handicap parking space when no patient can drive, or ever will? Etc, etc. Inflexibility and inability to make exceptions are built into these laws because it is too much work for the inspectors and superiors to try to accommodate the exceptions, besides the CYA factor in keeping their plush State jobs. The intent of these laws is completely lost in the attempt to legislate more and punish the innocent.

        • r0y says:

          I agree completely, except where you state that inflexibility and inability to make exceptions are build into the laws because it would be too much work for the inspectors. While that may be partially true, I think the greater reason is accountability and responsibility. No one anywhere in government – especially a bureaucrat – will EVER take any responsibility or be held accountable for anything. Asking that an inspector make a common sense judgment call scares the shit out of them.

      • nurse1 says:

        SLOBIRD …standards? You must be kidding me. They are called select standards! You better think twice before you talk about “standards and regulations” …these so called standards and regs are cherry picked according to the facility. After all just check out some old county buildings such as the old general hospital. You sure do not see any one shutting that place down. Why you ask? Because they are part of the system, even though the place is falling apart. I have been a nurse over 25 years and seen it all. Especially in this county. CORRUPT, CORRUPT, CORRUPT!

      • nurse1 says:

        SLOBIRD, a lot of money made????You are DELUSIONAL! Do you know what Medi-Cal pays? Check with your doctor!

        • nurse1 says:

          That would be check with your doctor and all of the doctors dropping out of the so called Obama Care! You know the insurance that all will be granted but hardly any will take! Geeeez SLOBIRD, you must work for the system, or be one of our local USELESS politicians.

          • nurse1 says:

            Sorry folks for my rant, but having been in the “industry” for so long comments like SLOBIRD’S makes my blood boil.

            • MajorityFan says:

              And that is a bad thing?

              • agag1 says:

                MF–you are a pig, plain, pure and simple.
                What has happened to make you such a pathetic, unhappy person? Get back on your meds.
                Sure do hope you live alone and don’t subject anyone else to your constant misery. Good Lord. Really do hope you get some obviously needed help. I feel sorry for you.

                • nurse1 says:

                  agag1. MF is one of the Mayor Jamie Irons cheerleaders here in Morro Bay. Also a avid fan of Gibson. I think that pretty much says it all.

          • GoneBabyGone says:

            Less than 1% of those Dr.’s accepting Medicare have stopped accepting it since the ACA has become law! Less than 1%… nurse1, I respect your zeal, I respect your obvious love for your profession but adding to hysteria that has NO basis in fact? Well, leaches have more value…

            • nurse1 says:

              Gone Baby Gone, do a little research. I am not talking about Medicare. I am talking about so called “Obamacare”, AKA in California known as Medi-Cal. You might want to do a bit of research on that. As far as your additional snide comments I will just chalk that up to your obvious lack of education.

            • nurse1 says:

              GBG, I would like to see your stats on just how many doctors accept Medi-Cal in this county. Would also like to see your stats on just how many have dropped out since “Obamacare” has come into existence. Many out there needing medical care that includes specialists, I am sure would like to see your stats as well.I would be more then happy to eat my words if you could provide me a list of those that will accept and help people that are at, or below the poverty level in our county.

              • GoneBabyGone says:

                The stats for California (Medi-Cal) aren’t available yet, probably won’t be until next year, but let me give you this as it speaks to the accuracy of any numbers on the ACA in California:

                “The California agency that oversees the state’s low-income health plan vastly overstated the number of doctors who accepted patients through the state program last year, even as the number of people enrolled in the program was set to skyrocket under the federal Affordable Care Act, the California Health Report has found.”

                “In response to a public records request, the Department of Health Care Services said in May that there had been 109,000 physicians taking Medi-Cal in spring 2013.”

                “But, after a California Health Report blog post referenced that, the California Medical Association said that the figure must be incorrect because it’s greater than the total number of licensed physicians in the state that year.”

                “According to the Medical Board of California’s 2012-13 annual report, there were only 104,422 licensed doctors in California last year. A significant number of those physicians also did not accept Medi-Cal, according to the Medical Association.” (Find this source yourself as well….)

                My stats for Medicare ARE accurate and are backed by a number of studies, find them your damn self.

                Uneducated? Really? That’s the best you can do? Insult someone rather than just stick to the facts? Weak, very weak!

                County-by-county stats? You are kidding me right? Especially from SLO?!! You’re really kidding me, right?!!!

                Any doctor that drops his ability to treat patients because of the drop of reimbursement from the government, especially existing patients, should check his or her own moral compass. My doctor, who accepts both, says that her only “bitch” (her word, not mine) about the the ACA was the dramatic increase in paperwork which translated to less “face-to-face” time with the patient, either by her or her staff. But, she also saw a time coming when that paperwork became less burdensome and as far as losing some of her income, which hadn’t happened as of yet, she would adjust, as her first concern was the care of her patients as it had been when she first came into practice.

                Read the “17000” obligation under the Welfare and Institution Code and how that is widely interpreted. SLO is a “payer” county who chooses to contract with private providers which limits those with Medi-Cal coverage to access good medical care. Out of the 58 counties in California 34 of them belong to CMSP which offers medical insurance coverage for those who qualify. Maybe SLO should join in that rank-and-file…

                I respect you and those in your profession but I DO think a lot of you have misplaced the idea of “patient first” to the idea of “profit first”…

                • MajorityFan says:

                  It should always be “Patients First”, GBG. The nurse differs, somewhat respectfuly.

                • nurse1 says:

                  Gone Baby Gone, since you are so adept at citing studies,perhaps you could give this woman some help with her daughter? Am not sure they would benefit from your history lessons. Perhaps some real day to day knowledge and solutions would be more appropriate. I work in the real world. Not off studies, or outdated history lessons.I work in REAL TIME. All of your advice, cherrypicked stats etc…do nothing to help those that need help NOW. Cant wait to see your advice to this mom.


              • GoneBabyGone says:

                One more thing… From what I’ve read those Dr.’s who take Medicare in California usually take Medicare as well, and if they don’t take one they don’t usually take the other… Is that correct?

                And here is a link that shows QUITE a few specialists who take Medi-Cal here in SLO County (this I do for those out there that might be reading this that just might take your arrogance and anger as actual knowledge based on fact… It was revised in April 2014 so should be fairly accurate to date, Your welcome!)


                • GoneBabyGone says:

                  Sorry! Meant to say:

                  From what I’ve read those Dr.’s who take Medicare in California usually take Medi-Cal as well, and if they don’t take one they don’t usually take the other… Is that correct?

    • Pelican1 says:

      Isn’t there a way for all of us to pull together our resources, whether it be time, materials, labor, money, or whatever it takes to prevent this community treasure from going away?
      Sjany has given until it hurts…now it’s time to give back.

      • r0y says:

        We have, and it exists. It’s called the progressive tax system. Those who make, are taken from and redistributed to those who do not make. Period. The problem isn’t the funding or money, per se, rather it is the bureaucracy needing to exist. It is a lack of honest and accountability in the system that ultimately drags it down. The Affordable Care Act is only the latest in the dishonesty / lack of accountability and will surely be dragging many things down. We were told this from day 1, and now we see it all around us (provided one’s head is out of the sand).

        • LameCommenter says:

          Good comment, Roy, yet you get 5 to 0 thumbs down. Our liberal friends are busy working this site with the thumbs down.

          You are on the correct track. I lost my plan and Dr. no matter what the effing liar clipboard organizer in the White House said over 20 times on televised speeches. I offered my guy big, simple cash to keep me, and he said the ACA made that an illegal transaction and regrettably couldn’t see me!

          It has been wisely and eloquently posted below about the damage of government overregulation.

          • GoneBabyGone says:

            Source on making a cash payment instead of insurance coverage for medical care to a Dr. that participates in the ACA illegal?


          • GoneBabyGone says:

            And look at the EXTREME DAMAGE the lack of government regulation has done in comparison… Or maybe you’ve just completely forgot about the 2007 – 2008 meltdown, or, you’re one of those who participated in it at a profit… Say what?!

            • nurse1 says:

              Oh yeah we forgot it is Bush’s fault!

              • MajorityFan says:

                If you say so.

              • GoneBabyGone says:

                Well, yea! His along with a few POTUS’s before him. Then we have folks like you who expect our current POTUS to fix something in less than a term that was in the making for YEARS (at least 8 but but probably closer to over 20) without spending a dime or increasing taxes. And now? A complete disregard for the citizens need while we have a partisan war going on in our capital, led by the far right! What a farce! The least productive Congress in history! And sponsored by the far right! You must be proud nurse1 to align yourself with that… Lucky health care didn’t just go away all together and the the likes of the De Groot home having any longevity at all, huh?

          • nurse1 says:

            Lame Commenter, quit trying to make sense to the senseless. You are wasting your time. These folks do not know the difference between Medi-Cal,
            Medicare or Medicaid, SDI, SSI, GF etc…etc…one thing they do have in common is their belief that the tooth fair will pay for all of it. Of course via your pocket.

            • GoneBabyGone says:

              Now I’m senseless? Guess that just goes along with your “uneducated” contention, right? Can’t get an education if you’re senseless, right? God, I’d hate to be one of your non-right wing patients or one that walks through the door with your “tooth fairy” insurance coverage…

              No, no tooth fairy belief, just the certain knowledge that ALL HUMAN BEINGS deserve the same level of medical care regardless of their ability to pay.

              Your “tooth fairy” is paying for the care of at least some of those at the De Groot home, part of your salary is paid for by the “tooth fairy”, right? Or do you work for one of those Dr.’s that stopped taking Medi-Cal (or never took it) and you’re pissed now? If you do work at a place that pays you out of the “tooth fairy” coffers show your complete and true displeasure by refusing to take that portion of your check! Nah, you wouldn’t do that because then you’d have to be relying on the “tooth fairy” as well.

              I feel for those kids, I do! What California has done is wrong, in my opinion; if there is no lack of care, no complaints and all is well, well, LEAVE IT ALONE!

              You take care

          • MajorityFan says:

            Please ask your doctor to enter the 21st Century. Ditto the Nurse.

            • GoneBabyGone says:

              Here’s something of interest… Something nurse1 should take a moment out of her busy PA career to read…


              Her discipline as a Physician Assistant doesn’t come with a paltry salary here in California either, somewhere between 70k to over a 100k a year, depending on what area of the medical practices she works in. Does she deserve it? Yea! But not if she carries her obvious dislike for low income individuals with “tooth fairy” health care benefits over into his or her practice. I wonder if that attitude was evident at the De Groot home… Just askin’!

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