Health Officials Ban New Admissions to Arbour-HRI

Posted on November 28, 2013

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From the Boston Globe, by Chelsea Conaboy:

New curb on Brookline mental health hospital

State finds risk at facility, bars admissions

State regulators have prohibited a Brookline psychiatric hospital from admitting any patients, citing deteriorating conditions and an immediate risk to patient safety.

Health officials took the unusual action Thursday against Arbour-HRI, part of a chain of mental health hospitals and clinics that has been repeatedly cited in Massachusetts and other states for understaffing and poor training of workers.

Inspectors made a surprise visit to Arbour-HRI in October, after receiving a report about a female patient being forcibly searched, an incident that state Mental Health Commissioner Marcia Fowler described in an interview Monday as “a very serious human rights violation.” The inspectors identified a range of problems, including dirty conditions and untrained or inexperienced staff, she said.

As an initial step, the Department of Mental Health slightly reduced the number of patients that the 66-bed hospital was allowed to treat at a given time. But when Arbour-HRI did not properly address the problems that regulators had identified, the state halted admissions altogether.

Lizbeth Kinkead, the department’s licensing director, wrote to Arbour’s owner, Universal Health Services, that she was concerned that patient care at the hospital was “substantially compromised.”

Full article, which appeared on the front page of the Boston Globe: http://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2013/11/26/arbour/tIsXAMwvCkHZi4DS8iuddM/story.html

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