A report by researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) has criticized Hartgrove Hospital for a pattern of physical and sexual abuse at the psychiatric facility, reports the Chicago Tribune. The six-month investigation of the 150-bed facility found that many teen and child patients feared for their safety.
As a result of the report, Illinois has stopped sending new state wards to the hospital, the newspaper reported. Hartgrove Hospital cares for Illinois’ state wards, including minors for whom social services officials have recommended for inpatient psychiatric care. The hospital has continued to treat minors already in its care. Adults are also treated there.
The report detailed instances where severely ill patients were ignored, a patient exhibiting sexually predatory behavior was allowed to move freely and a minor had broken bones due to the improper use of restraint techniques. The report noted that over-crowding was so severe that patients slept in hallways or day rooms.
Researchers also cited “a consistent pattern of unacceptable risks of harm” and “questionable clinical management practices by hospital and corporate officials at all levels of the organization.”
In response, Universal Health Services, Inc., the Pennsylvania-based parent company of Hartgrove, denied many of the report’s conclusions, stating, “Despite the findings in the UIC report, Hartgrove is proud of its track record and has many more success stories to its credit than the negative ones highlighted in the report.”
Many of the UIC findings on Hartgrove were confirmed by officials from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the Tribune reported.
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