What really happened at Cenikor? Abuse, kissing and redaction
This week Watchdog is taking a moment to single out the Texas Department of State Health Services for its work in protecting patient privacy.
In the name of patient privacy, the department deleted a thing or two (meaning everything) about a substance abuse facility, Cenikor Foundation of Deer Park, when we asked for documents about a report of patient abuse there.
In fact, officials got out their black pen and went Richard Nixon on a "notice of violation" against the facility -- they blacked out large chunks of information in the name of patient privacy.
We blow you a metaphorical kiss, health department, for your stand for the patient.
Alas, the Texas Attorney General decided that the health department hadn't really been protecting patient privacy and that some information was, in fact, "not highly intimate or embarassing" -- at least, not to any patient.
The accusation was that a Cenikor business manager kissed a client on the cheek and hugged her after he had been warned about maintaining professionalism. The conduct supposedly went on from August 2008 to April 2009.
The state health department had withheld those details.
The facility was told about the business manager's conduct on April 9 but didn't report the frisky business until April 22. The attorneys at the Texas Department of State Health Services apparently decided that the unnamed, unidentified patient would be deeply embarrassed and forever traumatized if word of the allegation got out.
-- Darren Barbee