Clinic boss quits after patient in vegetative state gives birth

Henrietta Brewer
January 9, 2019

Bill Timmons' resignation, which was unanimously accepted by Hacienda's board of directors, came as new allegations of past abuses emerged. Police are now investigating the incident. Awake but immobile, and apparently unaware, her universe consisted mostly of a room at a Phoenix Hacienda HealthCare facility where she received round-the-clock care.

"I can't believe someone would bathe her daily for nine months, never know she wasn't having her period, she wasn't growing in her mid-section", one of the woman's former caregivers told ABC15, which did not reveal his or her identity.

DISTURBING DETAILS: "None of the staff were aware that she was pregnant until she was pretty much giving birth".

In the statement, Gary Orman, Executive Vice President of the board for Hacienda Healthcare, vowed that the organization "will accept nothing less than a full accounting" of the incident.

The chief executive officer of Hacienda HealthCare resigned Monday, just days after CBS Phoenix affiliate KPHO-TV reported that a vegetative patient at a Hacienda nursing facility there had given birth.


In a statement, tribal officials said the woman was still in a coma when she gave birth.

She had been left in a vegetative state (awake but with no signs of awareness) for over 10 years after nearly drowning.

The Hacienda statement said the company welcomed the move by the police and had looked into conducting its own DNA tests, but attorneys said it would be illegal.

In the statement, DHS spokesperson Melissa Blasius-Nuanez said the agency immediately initiated an onsite complaint investigation to "ensure the health and safety of the patients and ensure the facility is in compliance with all state laws and regulations".

"Trust has been severed, period", she said.


The facility, which has room for over 50 patients, is now under investigation by police and the Arizona Department of Health Services.

Now at the health center, more security guards are present and a new protocol requiring male staffers to be accompanied by female staffers if they go into a female patient's room has been put into place.

The Hacienda facility serves infants, children and young adults who are "medically fragile" or have developmental disabilities, according to its website.

One staff member was sacked for making repeated inappropriate sexual comments to patients.

The resident said that "it made him feel uncomfortable", according to records from the Arizona Department of Health and Human Services, People magazine reported.


Meanwhile, a state lawmaker is considering legislation to protect patients living at long-term healthcare facilities from abuse.

Other reports by iNewsToday

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