Past inspections reveal TMC-Lakewood failed to protect patients from abuse

TMC-Lakewood employee charged with sodomy

KANSAS CITY, Mo - Previous state inspections show Truman Medical Center's Lakewood campus failed to protect patients from abuse. 

On Saturday, Luis Soliz, 49 was charged with sodomy and sexual misconduct after two employees at TMC-Lakewood allegedly caught Soliz performing a sex act on a patient. 

Luis Soliz is accused of abusing a patient at TMC-Lakewood.

According to one of the witnesses, Soliz reported, "I've had this problem for a while."

The 41 Action News Investigators reviewed three years of state inspection reports for TMC-Lakewood.

In 2016, the state documented that TMC-Lakewood did not conduct proper background checks on two of 13 employees.

According to the report, "the facility failed to check the Nurse Aide Registry to determine if new employees had a Federal Indicator (findings against a Certified Nurse Aide (CNA) of Abuse, Neglect, or Misappropriation.)"

If an employee is on the registry, it would prevent them from working in a long-term care facility. 

In 2015, another state inspection revealed the facility didn't properly rule out abuse in cases where patients were injured. In one instance, a patient had a black-eye. In a separate case, a patient had bruising down the left side of their body, from their collar bone to their waist. 

According to the report, the staff did not properly investigate or document the injuries to make sure the patients were not being abused.

TMC-Lakewood sent 41 Action News the following statement:

All Health Care facilities are under heavy regulation, as they should be. Truman Medical Centers has an aggressive compliance program including an anonymous tip hotline (each employee has that number printed on the badge set they wear daily) and a full-time compliance staff reporting directly to the Board of Directors. All employees are required to take part in detailed safety training each year. Truman Medical Centers has worked diligently to establish a “zero tolerance” culture, with the focus on the well-being of patients.

In situations where state surveyors would notify TMC Lakewood’s Long Term Center of a deficiency, an immediate plan would be put in place to ensure the deficiency is addressed and systemic changes are put in place to ensure an issue does not recur.

For instance, in the case of missing CNA background reports, all LTC employee files are audited by the HR manager to ensure the Nurse Aid Registry has been checked. This is in addition to the extensive nationwide criminal search, medical sanctions search, sex offender search, and Family Care Safety Registry search that already existed in those files (TMC performs multiple, overlapping searches).  We then follow up with information to show actions have taken place and monitoring is occurring to make sure solutions are sustained. The Department of Health and Senior Services 2017 survey shows all background checks completed.

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