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McCall's Chapel School in Ada fined $21k

By Gavin Off and Ginnie Graham - Tulsa World Staff Writers Published: February 22, 2010

Editor's Note: This is the second of a two-part series of stories investigating conditions in Oklahoma's group homes for the mentally disabled, mentally ill and elderly. The investigation was conducted by reporters from the Tulsa World and The Oklahoman.

ADA - On a campus of a dozen cottages outside Ada, nearly 150 mentally disabled residents live and work at the McCall’s Chapel School.

They live in small, independent homes. A tour of one cottage recently showed spotless floors, made beds and shelves neatly lined with books, CDs and knickknacks.

But problems have occurred here.

Since 2006, state Health Department officials have reported more than 430 deficiencies, records show. Inspectors have found 21 cases of staff failing to provide appropriate medical care and 13 cases of failing to protect clients’ rights.

Nina Honeyman, McCall’s administrator, dismissed some recent minor violations. She said Health Department officials are retaliating after she wrote a letter complaining state inspectors were rude and unprofessional during a 2008 visit.

McCall’s also accumulated three cases since 2007 that were life-threatening, records show.

In one 2007 instance, a bipolar resident with a heart pacemaker was diagnosed with pneumonia. She died two weeks after she began having trouble breathing.

Despite the woman’s worsening condition and at least two trips to the hospital, staff failed to tell a registered nurse of the problem.

Less than a year later, a male client died from a heart attack.

The man told McCall’s staff he had chest pains. When a nurse visited the man, he could only manage to say “it hurts,” and indicated the pain came from the upper abdominal area.

A nurse asked that he be treated for indigestion.

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