Inmate dies at Central State Hospital in Va - wtvr

Full story: WTVR

The Virginia State Police is investigating an unattended death of an inmate resident at Central State Hospital in Petersburg.
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Anonymous employee

Bracey, VA

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#1
Mar 1, 2010
 

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All I'm going to say is that I hope they looked into this incident in detail...I will remain anonymous because I work at the hospital in question. Incidents like this happen all too often because they send inmates to us that we are not equipped to handle and law protect the patient far beyond necessary. You can not touch these patients because they are protected by the mental health act and these laws leave the staff subjected to being abused by the patients. These conditions cause the staff to be a bit on edge because your job is always in jeopardy if you touch the patient in the wrong way; therefore, leaving you not wanting to be bothered with them. We are understaffed, underpayed, and left uncared for by administrators. There is no help for us when dangerous clients are left in our care.....
Joe

United States

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#2
Mar 2, 2010
 

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I work at a state prison and am a corrections officer. The poster above me failed to say that the hospital nurses, doctors and anyone else looking at the inmates ALWAYS make us remove the restraints. Sometimes they need to be removed but just to check blood pressure and other routine checks do not require the removal of handcuffs. Stop being lazy and feeling sorry for the inmates and do your jobs the way we tell you is safest. These are dangerous people and we know what is best for safety.
Plus, I see the way EVERYONE is treated by all hospital staff. They are God and we are nothing.
klw

Newark, NJ

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#3
Mar 2, 2010
 

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Joe wrote:
I work at a state prison and am a corrections officer. The poster above me failed to say that the hospital nurses, doctors and anyone else looking at the inmates ALWAYS make us remove the restraints. Sometimes they need to be removed but just to check blood pressure and other routine checks do not require the removal of handcuffs. Stop being lazy and feeling sorry for the inmates and do your jobs the way we tell you is safest. These are dangerous people and we know what is best for safety.
Plus, I see the way EVERYONE is treated by all hospital staff. They are God and we are nothing.
all inmates are not dangerous!
mary tyree

Petersburg, VA

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#4
Mar 2, 2010
 

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Lets lay more employee off? Lets worry more about money than the welfare of the individuals? Gee who needs more staff? who needs more money for keeping your love ones safe?. We worry about putting more money into roads, or other more important things like giving away sample of booze.who will be left and who will be held responsibly when the staff is so tried they cannot take care of the individuals. Now that they are working 8 days straight with this so called mandatory overtime. Even though mandatory overtime was taken away along time ago by the governor that what suppose to be helping and the same one who took the job much needed in all state hospital. As stress becomes more and more open due to layoff. People like me who worked hard for over 15 years for the state was let go with only by forced retirement and ill and left with no insurance what will be next.Oh maybe someone who likes to put these type of much needed jobs down. May get out there and help the much needed staff who without them a lot more of this type of tragedy would happen. We need someone out there that cares. With no one who really does care they say they do but the number is the most important thing not the welfare of the individuals nor staff. Staff are truly the ones needed be treated with the respect they desire.
JDA

Chesterfield, VA

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#5
Mar 2, 2010
 

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Please refer to him as a PATIENT. I think that Central State Hospital is a HOSPITAL and people there may have criminal charges but are treated as PATIENTS.
Thank you.
Anonymous

Chesterfield, VA

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#6
Mar 2, 2010
 

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Yes, Central State is a Hospital and the clients are patient that are inmates...Being labelled a patient give them more freedom to cause harm Phycial, emotional and finacial to staff..One lie can cause a person to fight for their job.
Joe

Bumpass, VA

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#7
Mar 2, 2010
 

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JDA wrote:
Please refer to him as a PATIENT. I think that Central State Hospital is a HOSPITAL and people there may have criminal charges but are treated as PATIENTS.
Thank you.
That right there is the problem!!! They are INMATES.Wards of the state. Period. Just because their surroundings change does not mean their status, or crimes did too. If you feel so strongly about them not being called inmates then get the governor to release them, restore their rights and you can invite them to dinner. Just remember that a lot of them are rapists, murderers and sexual predators.
Joe

Bumpass, VA

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#8
Mar 2, 2010
 
klw wrote:
<quoted text>
all inmates are not dangerous!
No they are not. But, most are if in prison. Jay-walking or speeding doesn't come with a PRISON term. Maybe you can come work with the 1,000 inmates that I do and tell me how safe it is to be around them???
Lee

Richmond, VA

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#9
Mar 2, 2010
 

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Funny reading all of these blogs; the person above that stated about staff brings a very good point. Central State Hospital is a State Hospital in Virginia. Those of you who haven’t been paying much attention in the news with Virginia’s state budget cuts don’t realize how these actions affect staffing ratios in state facilities. Those of you who are not familiar with the design of a maximum state forensic unit, like Mr. Correctional Officer above, yes its maximum security and they are inmates sent to the hospital for psychiatric needs, but once they’ve been admitted to the “hospital” they are consider a patient. But if you need a title, they are an inmate patient. The same rules that apply in correction no longer apply in the same fashion when they are patients. Yes restraints or handcuffs have their time when they are used, but there are legalities of when they can’t be used as well, Mr. Correctional Officer may not be aware of when these rules apply. In corrections they are cell blocks with bars, there are no bars on the wards of a hospital of a patient’s room. Vision your prisons with no bars to rooms, that what you have in a hospital. This is when your staff comes into play. Having adequate staff ensures the safety of the patients/inmates and the safety of others. Again state hospitals vs. prison the same rule don’t apply to handling aggressive inmates. In prisons there’s no limit for seclusion or restraining inmates. You know correctional officers that brag about how their shift handled certain inmates that acted out. In a facility like a Psychiatric Hospital, like the above post stated, you can’t touch them. You can’t “man handle them” because again they are “patients” and being “patients” there are only non-endangering acts that staff can use on the aggressive patients. No hitting, kicking, pushing, or choke holds that you working in corrections can get away with. Mr. Correctional Officer you can go the VA governor and have the laws changed and I’m sure that the staff that works in these types of facilities would thank you. One empathize that this occurred, but the possibilities of why it occurred are endless. Many of you say close these types of facilities, as our new lovely governor shows attempts of. But I tell you this, I sleep better at night knowing #1 that the people that do not know the difference in what is right and what is wrong,#2 the people that killed the child, daughter, mother, or baby you saw in the news,#3 the rapist,#4 the one that hears and sees what others don’t and believe what they experience as real are in facilities like these and not walking the streets outside in my neighborhood. Better yet, at your front door. The ones you need to worry about are the ones that haven't been identified. Have a day.
A Loving Cousin

Washington, DC

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#10
Mar 2, 2010
 

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Let us please remember that no matter how one labels "this young man", he has a family that dearly loves him and misses him a lot! He has a mother and father whose hearts are broken by a situation that did not have to happen, a sister who cries each night for her brother who is gone from her life forever, a grandma that must deal with the travesty of burying her grandson, and lots of loving cousins, aunts, uncles, friends and other family members who mourn this preventable loss. Let us remember that this young man is a human being, a child of God, who deserved to be treated with human dignity and a chance in life. God bless.
ANONYMOUS

Hopewell, VA

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#11
Mar 3, 2010
 

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Inmates sent to central State Hospital should be treated as patients to a certain degree but still considered and should be treated as inmates as they are still incarcerated and potentially dangerous. The hospital protects these patient/inmates too much to the point where they can be very dangerous to staff and patients. They have too many clinical professionals not doing much in providing treatment: 12 fulltime MDs , 4 asst. medical directors ,lots of psychologists and nurses for 200 patients with very minimum admissions and discharges. Direct staffs are the work horse of the hospital. They should do some housecleaning in the administration and reward the hardworking direct staffs.
Educated

Chesterfield, VA

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#12
Mar 3, 2010
 

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ANONYMOUS wrote:
Inmates sent to central State Hospital should be treated as patients to a certain degree but still considered and should be treated as inmates as they are still incarcerated and potentially dangerous. The hospital protects these patient/inmates too much to the point where they can be very dangerous to staff and patients. They have too many clinical professionals not doing much in providing treatment: 12 fulltime MDs , 4 asst. medical directors ,lots of psychologists and nurses for 200 patients with very minimum admissions and discharges. Direct staffs are the work horse of the hospital. They should do some housecleaning in the administration and reward the hardworking direct staffs.
I work in a state hospital and have seen the "direct staff" and I often find it hard to tell the patients from them.
Anonymous

Chester, VA

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#13
Mar 3, 2010
 

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I am a former employee of Central State Hospital Forensic Unit. From my experience working there, the higher positioned staff (Hospital Director, MD's, Social Workers, Psychiatrist, etc.) never took their jobs seriously. As far as the staffing goes, it was always a ratio of about 5 staff members to 25 patients. On one of the wards most of the patients are above 6 feet tall and over 300 lbs but is staffed with nothing but females. And some buildings which is considered a level lower than the forensic building, patients get to have dvd players, tv's and other electronics in their rooms and the majority of these patients were first admitted in forensics. I have worked plenty of times in the area of where the INMATE died and I must say, that it is a dangerous ward. No matter what a patient does, they are always right according to CSH POLICY. It is always considered as "Patient Abuse". They are not patients, they are INMATES. I have seen patients get stabbed, slit their wrist, attempt to hang themselves,attack staff, even pregnant females and more and the only punishment they got was restraints and medication to make them sleep for a few hours. Once the medication wears off and they are out of restraints, they do the same thing over again. There has been plenty of times when wards have been short staffed due to lack of workers. You never know how your day will end when working in the forensic unit. The educational courses "Treatment Malls" are a waste of time. INMATES earn points for participation and at the end of the week, they get awarded with snacks from the canteen. Its not a hospital setting, it's more like an elementary school for murderers, criminals, sex offenders, etc. There are camera's on every ward but it seems like the camera's only record what it wants to record.
You have inmates walk around freely that is hearing voices that only he/she can hear. Noone knows what that INMATE has the intentions of doing.
I pray for all staff that they walk out safely each day because they have a tough job to handle everyday. Staff should be paid way more than what they are making now.
zyprexa

Chesterfield, VA

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#14
Mar 3, 2010
 

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Educated wrote:
<quoted text>
I work in a state hospital and have seen the "direct staff" and I often find it hard to tell the patients from them.
I'ts the same here at western state hosp.
zyprexa

Chesterfield, VA

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#15
Mar 3, 2010
 

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Anonymous wrote:
I am a former employee of Central State Hospital Forensic Unit. From my experience working there, the higher positioned staff (Hospital Director, MD's, Social Workers, Psychiatrist, etc.) never took their jobs seriously. As far as the staffing goes, it was always a ratio of about 5 staff members to 25 patients. On one of the wards most of the patients are above 6 feet tall and over 300 lbs but is staffed with nothing but females. And some buildings which is considered a level lower than the forensic building, patients get to have dvd players, tv's and other electronics in their rooms and the majority of these patients were first admitted in forensics. I have worked plenty of times in the area of where the INMATE died and I must say, that it is a dangerous ward. No matter what a patient does, they are always right according to CSH POLICY. It is always considered as "Patient Abuse". They are not patients, they are INMATES. I have seen patients get stabbed, slit their wrist, attempt to hang themselves,attack staff, even pregnant females and more and the only punishment they got was restraints and medication to make them sleep for a few hours. Once the medication wears off and they are out of restraints, they do the same thing over again. There has been plenty of times when wards have been short staffed due to lack of workers. You never know how your day will end when working in the forensic unit. The educational courses "Treatment Malls" are a waste of time. INMATES earn points for participation and at the end of the week, they get awarded with snacks from the canteen. Its not a hospital setting, it's more like an elementary school for murderers, criminals, sex offenders, etc. There are camera's on every ward but it seems like the camera's only record what it wants to record.
You have inmates walk around freely that is hearing voices that only he/she can hear. Noone knows what that INMATE has the intentions of doing.
I pray for all staff that they walk out safely each day because they have a tough job to handle everyday. Staff should be paid way more than what they are making now.
the higher the education the less common sense they have,most of the doctor's and the administration at central state and western state hospitals!
zyprexa

Chesterfield, VA

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#16
Mar 3, 2010
 

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most doctors in private practice in Staunton do not have much good to say for the doctor's at western state hosp.I've been in this area well over 30 years and have heard much about these hospitals....not much good!
My2Cents

Greenbelt, MD

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#17
Mar 4, 2010
 
This child was MURDERED. From what I know we have a better security system in our homes than this mental facility. Camera's can't be in there bedrooms, but are in the hallways. That's nice, but can you really monitor a camera 24/7. Should the family be comforted that the MURDERER may be caught on camera, Isn't Justin STILL dead?
Why aren't there motion detectors or even door sensors when door to a private room is opened. Don't the mentally I'll deserve protection?
zyprexa

Staunton, VA

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#18
Mar 4, 2010
 

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central state just like western state WILL do everything possible to hide what goes on inside.....away from the publics eyes and ears! They have a person or two thats all they do is watch,listen,then cover up.Families need to get involved!
Anonymous

Girdletree, MD

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#20
Mar 6, 2010
 

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I am a person that is employeed at Central State Hospital and my heart go out to the family because it could have been my child or me that this man killed. Some patients need to be turned around at the door. I beleive that if a patients informs you that he feels like murdering anyone the hospital need to have a turn down policy. This young man died for nothing because of stupid misstakes that could have been prevented. I hope the family can go on but I know it will be very hard knowing that someone could have done something to save thier childs life and didn't.
Unbelievable

United States

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#21
Mar 6, 2010
 

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I am looking at these blogs and it is so unbelieveable the attitude that folks have towards the inmates that they are paid to work with. Budget cuts, unpaid , long hours does n't give anyone the right to slack on the job. This young man was not a rapist, murder, or child molester. He was ordered by the judge of the court for restoration. If you do not like your job do something else with your life. A job that you care about the human beings that you work with no matter who they are. No matter how angry a patient or a staff becomes at an inmate or patient what kind of monster kills a 22 year old?

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