State and Health Care Service Firm Reach Settlement
NEWARK – A Middlesex County health care service firm has agreed to pay $27,500 in civil penalties and investigative reimbursements to the state, under terms of a Consent Order that ends an investigation into the firm’s business practices.
VC Services, L.L.C., which does business as Affinity Care of New Jersey, agreed to comply with the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act and the Employment and Personnel Services Act and regulations in its future operations. The company, which is located in Perth Amboy, also agreed to resolve all consumer complaints referred to it by the Division of Consumer Affairs for the next 18 months through binding arbitration if the parties cannot reach a settlement on their own.
This is the second settlement this year involving a health care service firm. The Division in July settled with Preferred Health Mate, Inc., of Brick Township.
"VC Services will revise its business practices to comply with our regulations to ensure clients receive proper care, said David Szuchman, Consumer Affairs Director. "We will not allow the public to be placed at needless risk."
VC Services agreed to cease and desist from the following practices:
Matching unqualified aides with clients that require certified aides;
Allowing uncertified aides to perform services that require a certified aide;
Creating an employment application that does not comply with state regulations;
Failing to verify license status of each individual prior to referral or placement;
Failing to maintain a copy of each individual’s license or registration;
Failing to create a job order for every position for which a referral or placement is to be made;
Failing to certify an applicant’s work history; and
Failing to conduct the 30 and 60 day client health care review.
Deputy Attorney General John D. Hugelmeyer represented the state in this matter.
The Division of Consumer Affairs, through its Regulated Business Section, registers and oversees health care service firms. These firms employ and assign individuals to provide health care or personal care services either in the home or at a care-giving facility. Personal care services include bathing, toileting, transferring, dressing, grooming, and assistance with ambulation, exercise, or other aspects of personal hygiene.
A list of all health care service firms registered in New Jersey can be viewed at www.njconsumeraffairs.gov/ocp/agency.pdf . For further information, contact the Division’s Regulated Business Section at 973-504-6370 .