LR 296 Hearing
Wednesday, February 21, 2018
12:00 pm5:00 pm
Nebraska State Capitol, Executive Board, Room 2102
LR 296 would appoint a special committee known as the State-Licensed Care Facilities Investigative Committee of the Legislature to study the conditions and treatment of individuals with mental illness within State-Licensed Care Facilities. The committee would also serve to investigate what the department has done to implement Technical Assistance & Consultation recommendations regarding housing for persons with mental illness and to study whether the department is taking adequate steps to ensure behavioral health services are administered in the most integrated setting pursuant to the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Hard on the heels of the closing of LifeQuest at Palmer due to poor conditions and their lack of responsiveness to unsatisfactory reviews, it holds the state accountable for conditions in these facilities and reinforces the need for decent services that allow people to remain in their community instead of being shut away in a remote revamped nursing home.
Case in point: In the summer of 2017, concerns were brought up concerning the health and safety of residents living at the Life Quest facility at the Coolidge Center in Palmer, Nebraska. Life Quest was licensed as a mental health center. An inspection of the facility was done by Division of Public Health and the facility failed to meet the standards of the DHHS. This then led to an investigation of the facility where multiple violations were discovered, leading to the revocation of the facility's license.
• On September 3, a U.S. military veteran died at Life Quest as a result of the facility's complete disregard of her health
• Following her death, law enforcement launched an investigation into the facility.
• On September 22, the Division issued an investigative report into the resident's death.
• On October 5, the Division finally revoked Life Quest's license to operate as a mental health center
For more details on the conditions people endured in the Palmer facility, the Inspection and Investigation reports can be downloaded from our website at http://www.disabilityrightsnebraska.org/what_we_do/palmer-ne-lifequest-incidents.html