Lawmakers discuss CVH abuse allegations at hearing - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Lawmakers discuss CVH abuse allegations at hearing

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Dozens attended a public hearing for Monday to discuss allegations of severe patient abuse at the Connecticut Valley Hospital in Middletown. (WFSB) Dozens attended a public hearing for Monday to discuss allegations of severe patient abuse at the Connecticut Valley Hospital in Middletown. (WFSB)
Connecticut Valley Hospital. (WFSB file) Connecticut Valley Hospital. (WFSB file)
Nine of the 10 people arrested for suspected abuse at the Connecticut Valley Hospital during previous court appearances. (WFSB) Nine of the 10 people arrested for suspected abuse at the Connecticut Valley Hospital during previous court appearances. (WFSB)
HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) -

State legislators discussed allegations of severe patient abuse at the Connecticut Valley Hospital in Middletown at a public hearing for Monday morning. 

The hospital has been under scrutiny after 10 employees were arrested.

Sen. Heather Somers called for the hearing and demanded swift action.

She said lawmakers would not stand for the alleged abuse.

"We had a lot of good questions and it's bringing up even more questions, so I think it 's the first step in a long process," Somers said.

According to arrest warrants, the workers at the Whiting Forensic Division were seen pushing, kicking and throwing liquid at a patient.

The arrest warrant states that the worst of the abuse was caught on surveillance camera.

Nine of the suspects were arrested in September and the 10th was charged last month.

See their mugshots here.

Thirty-seven staff members are also on administrative leave, as the investigation is still ongoing.

State officials from the Department of Public Health and the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services faced lawmakers at the Monday morning hearing.

CVH told Channel 3 that it has already begun overhauling its management team and how its staff is trained.

Officials from the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services said improvements throughout the campus have been made.

"We also increased video surveillance so now we have cameras all over campus and those are monitored real time," said DMHAS Commissioner Miriam Delphin-Rittmon.

A private security firm has been brought in to closely watch monitors.

The commissioner says they’ve also hired staff and retrained them about policies and procedures related to mandatory reporting.

But lawmakers are still skeptical.

“I don't think you can just come up with a plan and say ok, it's working. You need to go through a constant evaluation and pressing with internal audits...to see if a process is working," Somers said.

The audit is one thing Somers is looking to get more information on. She says she's asked about internal audits, when they've been done, and says no one has answered those questions.

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