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News for Colorado

State Closes Clear View Behavioral Health, Intends To Revoke License Permanently

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) has closed Clear View Behavioral Health in Johnstown, effective immediately, and is proceeding to revoke its license permanently because of a history of non-compliance with state and federal regulations, according to a CDPHE news release issued September 28.

Clear View’s five-year regulatory history includes 111 citations issued after state and federal investigators found deficient practices during 40 initial and revisit inspections, according to data on CDPHE’s Health Facilities website.  The inspections occurred mostly in response to complaints the Department received about the psychiatric facility.

The citations included violations of regulations concerning psychiatric evaluation, patient safety, infection control, administration of drugs, nursing services, treatment plans, patients rights, restraint and seclusion, and discharge planning.

Clear View also had seven occurrences at the facility that were required to be reported to CDPHE:  four occurrences of sexual abuse, three of physical abuse, and one of neglect.

In July 2018, CDPHE issued a finding of “Immediate Jeopardy” twice, meaning Clear View’s non-compliance with regulations put patients’ health and safety at risk for serious injury, serious harm, serious impairment or death.

Clear View responded in December 2018 that it had corrected the deficient practices, and  CDPHE issued a conditional license in February 2019 for the facility to continue to operate.

When new complaints were filed with CDPHE and reports on problems at Clear View were aired by The Denver Channel, CDPHE made an unannounced visit to the facility to investigate in late May 2019.

As a result of finding “repeat deficiencies, as well as new deficiencies which placed Clear View patients’ health, safety, and welfare at risk,” CDPHE notified Clear View in June 2019  of its intention to revoke the psychiatric facility’s license, giving facility administrators 30 days to respond while allowing operations to continue.  Clear View responded and asked for a hearing before an administrative law judge.

Instead, CDPHE investigators revisited Clear View in September 2019 and, after determining that it was again in compliance with regulations, CDPHE allowed the facility to keep its license under terms of an agreement the parties signed in January.

Recently, CDPHE investigators, responding to new complaints, conducted another unannounced visit and found “multiple deficiencies, including nursing services and infection control.”

The Department concluded that the latest deficiencies, in addition to Clear View’s regulatory history, warranted a summary suspension “for consistent regulatory violations.”

CDPHE now intends to revoke Clear View’s license permanently.  It has been licensed since November 2015.

If you or someone you know experienced substandard conditions or harmful treatment at a mental health facility, we want to talk to you.  You can contact us by clicking here or by calling 303-789-5225.  All information will be kept in the strictest confidence.

Categories
Colorado Mental Health Institute News for Colorado

Patient’s Death at Colorado Mental Health Institute at Pueblo Due To Staff Neglect

A state investigation has concluded that staff neglect was the cause of the choking incident last September at the Colorado Mental Health Institute at Pueblo (CMHIP) that caused brain damage leading to a patient’s death, according to the occurrence summary report recently released by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE).

The forensic pathologist who subsequently performed the autopsy on the decedent concluded that the brain damage was the cause of death.

The male patient in his 60s lacked bottom teeth and had a dietary restriction that required his food to be cut into small pieces.  After being served whole food by CMHIP staff, he collapsed when it lodged in his throat and obstructed his breathing.  Staff reportedly attempted, but failed to dislodge the food with the Heimlich maneuver, and then performed CPR, but the patient remained unresponsive.

He was rushed to a local hospital, where he was placed on life support, but his condition never improved.  Eight days later the support services were discontinued and he was pronounced dead.

The autopsy report states the cause of death was brain damage due to the lack of oxygen from choking on food.

Three CMHIP staff members were suspended during the state investigation.  Following CDPHE’s finding of staff neglect, one staff member was fired, one resigned, and one received corrective action that included additional training and supervision.

An accelerated response to the incident by CDPHE was triggered by a complaint filed by the Citizens Commission on Human Rights of Colorado.

If you or someone you know has been harmed by treatment at the Colorado Mental Health Institute at Pueblo or any other mental health facility, we want to know what happened.  You can contact us by clicking here or by calling 303-789-5225.  All information will be kept strictly confidential.

Categories
News for Colorado

Please Sign CCHR’s Petition Demanding Investigation of Link Between Psychiatric Drugs And Violence

Image by Circe Denyer
Image by Circe Denyer

In all the speculation about what is causing the recent wave of shootings, the one thing they have in common has been largely ignored when it should be receiving urgent attention:  the shooters have received psychiatric treatment, which these days almost always means psychiatric drugs with known links to violence: 

  • From 2004 to 2011, over 12,700 reports of violent side effects from psychiatric drugs were reported to the FDA. (Only 1%-10% of side effects are ever reported to the FDA, so the actual number of violent side effects from these drugs could easily be 10 to 100 times higher.)
  • At least 14 school shootings were committed by individuals taking or withdrawing from psychiatric drugs.  (In other school shootings, the shooters’ mental health history was not made public.)
  • The New York State Senate recognized the violence-inducing side effects of psychiatric drugs as far back as 2000, citing “a large body of scientific research establishing a connection between violence and suicide and the use of psychotropic drugs.”  [Psychotropic drugs = mind-altering psychiatric drugs]

CCHR is calling on U.S. lawmakers to immediately open an investigation into the role of psychiatric drugs in school shootings and similar acts of violence, given that  supporting data has to date been ignored by the U.S. government and the mental health agencies.

Please click here to read and sign CCHR International’s petition calling for this investigation. 

Categories
General News

Federal Investigation Of The Link Between Shootings and Psychiatric Drugs Is Long Overdue

Today’s school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, in which 20 small children and six adults were killed by an armed gunman, is the latest in a rash of tragic mass murders.  Will it also be the next act of senseless violence linked to psychiatric treatment – and, specifically, to psychiatric drugs?

NBC News reports that the 20-year-old alleged shooter, Adam Lanza, had a history of mental turmoil, according to what his brother Ryan told police.  If Adam Lanza was receiving psychiatric treatment, he almost certainly would have been given mind-altering psychiatric drugs.  If so, which one(s)?

In dozens of cases of mass murder or random acts of senseless violencethe perpetrators are known to have been under the influence of psychiatric drugs that have been documented by international drug regulatory agencies as causing adverse effects that include mania, psychosis, aggression, violence, and homicidal thoughts.

It is high time the public and public officials demand a federal investigation into shootings at schools, malls, and workplaces and any other acts of senseless violence for links to the mind-altering psychiatric drugs the shooters have taken. There is more than enough evidence to merit an investigation, and countless innocent lives are at stake.