SPRINGFIELD -- Governor George H. Ryan today ordered the transfer of 42 residents from the Lincoln Developmental Center to other appropriate care settings because of problems at the facility that place residents in jeopardy.
Ryan also ordered the Department of Human Services and the Department of Public Health to continue the constant monitoring of conditions at LDC to help maintain a suitable standard of care for all remaining residents. The governor will make a final decision on the future of the Lincoln Developmental Center after the first of the year.
The governor’s latest action follows his unannounced visit to the Lincoln Developmental Center last week. After a tour of the facility, Ryan said he was unhappy with the state of care being afforded residents.
“The things I saw first hand troubled me deeply and backed up the reports I’ve been getting from outside monitors,” Ryan said. “My concern is for the health and safety of the residents at LDC, people that are entrusted in our care. My tour left me less than comfortable with conditions at the facility and because of that, I’ve decided that we have to move out additional residents.”
Some of the residents to be moved from the LDC constitute the most medically intensive cases handled at the facility. Seventeen people in need of extensive medical care will be moved to appropriate health care facilities.
The remaining 25 will be transferred to the Jacksonville Developmental Center. The transfers will begin this week. Once the moves are complete, the number of residents at the LDC will be 244, down from 372 residents in October.
As part of a reform program at the facility initiated in October, the governor ordered 90 residents to be moved to other appropriate care settings in order to improve the resident to staff ratio. He also changed management at the facility and placed a state and federal monitoring team in place to report on conditions and help improve care. This reform program is the latest in a succession of reform efforts at LDC that stretch back to 1988.
However, in spite of these latest efforts, federal authorities decided to withhold federal Medicaid funds from the facility in November because the health and safety of LDC residents was once again found to be in jeopardy.