New report sheds light on 2 reported sex assaults at Flower Hosp - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

New report sheds light on 2 reported sex assaults at Flower Hospital

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SYLVANIA, OH (Toledo News Now) -

New details are emerging about the incident which put Flower Hospital's ability to accept Medicare and Medicaid at risk.

The United States Department of Health and Human Division of Medicare and Medicaid on Thursday released new information about the incident. The division says the "immediate jeopardy" was triggered by a sexual assault at the hospital in April.

HHS documents say that following the rape, the hospital moved the victim to the geriatric psychiatric unit and the reported rapist to the psychiatric intensive care unit. The documents allege the hospital failed to conduct a route analysis of the patient. The department also says the hospital did not take immediate action to protect other patients from harm.

Jessie Lee Buck, who was a patient at the time of the incident, has been charged with rape.

HHS also alleges hospital staff told them another sexual assault happened in August of 2011.

This is the first time the Department of Health and Human Services or the hospital has given details about the incident which caused the "immediate jeopardy." Toledo News Now had reported on both the rape and the HHS jeopardy. This is the first time anyone has said the two incidents were connected.

Flower Hospital was required to produce a plan to prevent something like this from happening in the future or lose Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement. The hospital did that last week, and is no longer under what HHS calls "immediate jeopardy."

The hospital says there were four concerns Medicare and Medicaid Services said needed to be met. First, a board oversight committee was created to oversee corrective measures.

Second, fast track investigation of cases has been implemented.

Third, additional security guards in the psych ward have been added to meet requirements of 15 minute safety checks and proactive 30 minute safety checks.

Fourth, the hospital has implemented enhanced staff and patient education on incidents and how to call for help.

"First and foremost, we sincerely apologize for the events that took place, the event that took place to our patients and their family. We own it. We're a learning organization and of course part of our learning is to make sure that we make improvements so that patients are safe. So we've undertaken all of those actions in our comprehensive action plan addresses that to ensure that patients safety is at the highest level of focus for us," said Flower Hospital President Alan Sattler.

Those changes directly impact just the psychiatric ward. The hospital says there was never any threat to patients in the rest of the hospital.

ProMedica released the following statement on the matter:

We sincerely apologize for the impact on our patients and their families. ProMedica Flower Hospital has been diligent in owning our responsibility to patient safety and have put several comprehensive measures in place. Some of those measures include additional safety and security, the immediate investigation of issues and enhanced staff and patient education.

All of the issues raised have been addressed and we are grateful that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services have approved our plan and verified its implementation through an onsite survey. ProMedica Flower Hospital is fully operational and there will be no interruption to any services to our patients.

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