EYEWITNESS LOCAL NEWSHOSPITAL MISHAP
from Eyewitness News Online
Internal Investigation Underway In Patient Misplacement
Reported by: Elizabeth Norieka
Videographer: Akash Vaghela
Web Producer: Elizabeth Norieka
Reported: Jun. 12, 2012 8:33 PM EDT
Updated: Jun. 12, 2012 10:19 PM EDT
Hamlin , Lincoln County , West Virginia
A mental hospital mix up makes for quite a mess including missing patients.
Tonight those patients are safe and sound but an internal investigation is underway to figure out who is at fault.
This all came to light Monday.
Officials at the Mildred Mitchell-Bateman Hospital discovered four patients they had discharged to Pathway, a facility in Hamilin, was not properly licensed to care for the mentally ill.
The patients had been there for under a week. The facility is actually a boarding house that transitions alcoholics and drug addicts back into society.
Eyewitness News was the only crew on scene as hospital workers came to pick up the patients, but they weren't there.
Pathway's operator Rick Clay, says they took off several hours before.
Three of those patients were found in the Hamlin area last night, the fourth was found at a homeless shelter this morning in Huntington.
An internal investigation is now underway. DHHR spokesman John Law says it is against their policy to send patients to unlicensed facilities. He says they are trying to figure out why this happened and who is responsible for the slip up.
Law also says he doesn't believe this sort of thing has happened before and that right now a new policy is being written so that this doesn't happen again.
City officials in Hamlin say they plan to pursue charges against Rick Clay the operator of Pathway for operating without a license.
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