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Sonoma Development Center Survey Reveals Major Problems


A 495 page survey conducted by the Department of Public Health and completed on July 3, 2012 reveals major problems of poor medical care and failures to prevent abuse and investigate when patients are harmed.

California Watch recently obtained a copy of the survey report, and an August 23 story in the Bay Citizen notes that the Center is in jeopardy of losing its certification for Medi-Cal and Medicare, which constitutes half of its annual budget. State regulators repeatedly faulted the in-house police force, the Office of Protective Services, for inadequate investigations, a failure that was the focus of an earlier series of stories by California Watch. Earlier this year, California Watch reported that detectives and patrol officers at the institutions routinely failed to conduct basic police work, even when patients died under mysterious circumstances. In case after case, detectives and officers delayed interviews with witnesses or suspects – if they conducted interviews at all. The state Department of Developmental Services operates five centers that house nearly 1,700 patients with cerebral palsy and other intellectual disabilities in Sonoma, Tulare, Los Angeles, Orange and Riverside counties. California is budgeted to spend about $314,000 this year per developmental center patient. The Bay Citizen article also links to the survey report:

http://www.baycitizen.org/crime/story/report-slams-state-institution-neglect/#.UDZsGIgEiEg.gmail