Expose of New Jersey’s broken medical examiner system

Lost body parts, innocent people sent to jail and child deaths going without proper investigation — all are the result of New Jersey’s dysfunctional medical examiner system, which has been known for decades as a national disgrace. An analysis of more than 420,000 death records by NJ Advance Media revealed New Jersey’s understaffing and crushing…

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Illinois DCFS failed to help parents who accidentally suffocated baby

An Illinois couple is arrested after their 2-month-old baby dies. Police said the living conditions in their home were so horrible that they contributed to the death of the baby and put the health and safety of their seven other children in jeopardy. Trash was allowed to accumulate for years, bugs and vermin infested the…

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Investigation reveals hospices abandon patients at death’s door

The hospice care that people expect — and sign up for — sometimes disappear when they need it most, a Kaiser Health News investigation shows. Analysis of 20,000 government inspection records revealed that missed visits and neglect are common for patients dying at home.  Families or caregivers, shocked and angered by substandard care, have filed…

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Young people with severe autism languish in hospitals

Teenagers and young adults with severe autism are spending weeks or even months in emergency rooms and acute-care hospitals, sometimes sedated, restrained or confined to mesh-tented beds, a Kaiser Health News investigation shows. These young people — who may shout for hours, bang their heads on walls or lash out violently at home — are…

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Oregon hides thousands of cases of shoddy senior care

An investigation by the Oregonian/OregonLive found that state officials have concealed thousands of cases of poor elder care and abuse from the public. The Oregon Department of Human Services runs a website that is meant to help family members identify safe places to care for loved ones with Alzheimer’s, dementia or other debilitating illnesses. But,…

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Oversight lags as for-profit firms take on caring for the vulnerable

An investigation by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution found that as the state of Georgia has begun moving residents of state psychiatric institutions into privately-run group homes and other small, community-based institutions, residents have been put at risk of injury and in some cases death.  Under the care of two of the largest for-profit companies running these…

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Across Florida, families of the mentally ill are dying for help

A six-month investigation by the Sun Sentinel in Fort Lauderdale found that people with mental illness have killed or brutally assaulted at least 500 loved ones in Florida since 2000. During that time, Florida’s spending on mental health programs has declined significantly. While family members struggle to seek medical help for a mentally ill loved…

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Scores of employees, patients say America’s largest psychiatric chain turns patients into profits

A BuzzFeed News investigation into Universal Health Services (UHS) raised questions about America’s largest psychiatric hospital chain. BuzzFeed News talked to 175 current and former staff members, many of whom said that UHS prioritized filling beds over the safety of staff and the rights of patients. UHS has more than 200 facilities across the country.…

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Illinois hides abuse and neglect of adults with disabilities

A Chicago Tribune investigation, “Suffering in Secret,” uncovered a broken state system that steers people with intellectual and developmental disabilities into group homes, ordinary private residences, then cloaks harm with secrecy and silence. The two-day series found that state officials underreported cases of abuse or neglect; recruited group home employees as “buddy investigators” to police…

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Thousands of Massachusetts kids in state custody reported as runaways

Kids in state custody ran away more than 3,400 times over a three-year period, according to figures obtained by Boston’s WBZ-TV. Some of those children ran away repeatedly, while 30 of the kids were missing for a year or longer, the records show. The WBZ I-Team received the data from the Department of Children and…

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