Local News

Inspection finds violations at Henderson hospital

Posted February 3, 2015 5:23 p.m. EST
Updated February 4, 2015 4:40 p.m. EST

Maria Parham Medical Center

— A hospital in Henderson is under the microscope following a surprise inspection by the federal government.

Inspectors found Maria Parham Medical Center violated several policies designed to keep patients safe.

Among the findings: Patients brought to the emergency department for mental health issues were routinely handcuffed or shackled to bed, which violates the hospital’s restraint policy.

Inspectors also said steps weren’t taken to remove items from rooms that could harm the patient or staff.

Inspectors also found nurses weren’t providing appropriate oversight of involuntarily committed patients as well as regular emergency department patients.

A Medicare inspection team found expired medical kits, highly flammable oxygen tanks that were unsecured, linens stored in a supply room, clean medical supplies stored on inappropriate shelves and food in the refrigerator that wasn’t dated.

The hospital provided written corrective actions to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. If the changes are not put in place, Maria Parham Medical Center could lose Medicare and Medicaid funding.

"Quality and patient safety are our highest priorities, and we take regulatory compliance in all matters very seriously," David Ruggles, marketing director for the hospital, said in a statement Wednesday.

He said the hospital is working with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services to ensure regulatory compliance.

"We are working closely and collaboratively with the agency to immediately implement a plan to ensure our regulatory compliance," Ruggles said. "We are confident that the follow-up survey by the agency will confirm that our hospital has successfully addressed the identified issues and is in full compliance."