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Follow-up survey finds more violations for Meriter

(NBC15)
Published: May. 18, 2018 at 6:24 PM CDT
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More than 30 new violations were found at UnityPoint Health - Meriter according to a nearly 100-page report released Friday by the Department of Health and Human Services Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

An inspection in March found the deficiencies did not involve known harm to patients. Building code violation, patient documentation errors, and injury prevention were cited in the report.

The inspection found items were not properly secured to prevent self-harm for psychiatry patients. Staff also did not properly document the use of soft restraints on patients after the restraints were used. Investigators also reported medication was not properly secured.

A follow-up investigation was completed May 10 showing a plan of correction by Meriter was completed. A few building code violations remain, but according to the report, Meriter has ordered the parts needed to correct the issues.

Meriter released a statement:

"We are currently working with CMS and are confident that all action plans will be satisfactorily implemented. Through all of this, we remain keenly focused on nurturing and protecting the health of all our patients and delivering the high-quality care we have provided to our community for the last 120 years."

The March inspection follows child abuse allegations in the hospital’s newborn intensive care unit. In February CMS cited the hospital for patient rights violations after an investigation found five newborns were abused. The nurse suspected of being involved in the abuse cases has been suspended from the hospital.

WMTV staff spoke with a Madison Police Department spokesperson Friday about child abuse allegations from February. The spokesperson said the special victims unit is still investigating.

As part of the initial investigation, the hospital could have been blocked from billing Medicare or Medicaid in March. After follow-up investigations, including the latest inspection in May, the deadline has been extended to June 24 to correct the latest violations.