Sep 3, 2012 11:08 AM by Associated Press
LAFAYETTE, La. (AP) - One client of the Lafayette Association for Retarded Citizens developed a bowel obstruction and another developed an antibiotic-resistant staph infection because association employees did not administer medicine properly, according to a report from the state Department of Health and Hospitals. The association had a Feb. 19 deadline for correcting problems found in December by the department's health standards section of the Department of Health and Hospitals, but neither DHH nor association Director Glenn Weber would comment on whether LARC met that deadline, The Advertiser reported. Weber said patient confidentiality rules keep him from talking about the report. DHH spokesman Ken Pastorick said DHH cannot comment because it is investigating LARC again. The report said a severely mentally disabled 53-year-old man whose medical problems included constipation and difficulty swallowing did not get a prescribed daily laxative for six consecutive days in October and nine other days in that month. He was hospitalized Oct. 28-29 for severe abdominal pain that turned out to be an obstructed bowel, DHH said. A moderately mentally disabled 50-year-old diabetic man was hospitalized in July 201 because his legs were "swollen and blue with open sores," the report said. He was released with salve for the sores, but a worker found him bleeding profusely in November and learned that the salve wasn't being used. The infection had become antibiotic-resistant, the report said. An administrative assistant said she had told other workers to stop using the salve because it wasn't on the man's plan of care and she didn't know about "progress notes" indicating the man's doctor wanted the salve applied, according to the report said. The worker said the administrative assistant told investigators she wasn't qualified as a mental retardation professional but was acting as one because another worker's maternity leave had left LARC short-handed. Clients remained in "immediate jeopardy" until Dec. 16, when LARC hired a registered nurse for its Supervised Independent Living program, according to the report.