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Published On: Thu, Dec 10th, 2015

New Life Lodge Case Still Full of Controversy

New Life Lodge really came to prominence due to the 2010 death of Lindsey Poteet. That event attracted a lot of media attention, particularly in the local area. However other deaths at the facility have increased the negative attention.

This has brought to light issues including certain insurers having stopped sending patients to the lodge. Plus these reviews have brought to life issues regarding how the way the lodge is run, and the qualification and attitude of the staff members.

Lindsey Poteet

Lindsey Poteet

Lindsey Poteet’s Death

Lindsey Poteet was a mother of a young daughter, but she suffered from drug addiction, and this resulted in her staying as an inpatient at New Life Lodge.

She spent a few weeks at the lodge and made good progress. However, towards the end of her stay she took ill with pneumonia. Family members were very concerned since when they spoke to her on the phone they reported that her breathing was very labored and that she coughed a lot.

On the last day of her stay at the lodge she was almost too weak to stand, and was taken to hospital. However, rather than being taken by ambulance, and rather than going to the nearest hospital, she was driven in a van by a medically unqualified staff member. And to a hospital 30 miles away, rather than to the more local one 8 miles away. The reasons for these decisions have not been explained.

During this journey she stopped breathing. She was declared brain dead and put on life support. And since it was determined that there was no chance of her recovery, the life support was turned off at her mother’s consent and she died.

In the autopsy, it was found that her system was full of anti-depressants and also therapeutic drugs, and the toxicity this caused was given as the cause of death.

The Death of Savon N. Kinney

New Life Lodge then came under further investigation and negative publicity with the death of 18 year old Savon N. Kinney. He was admitted to New Life while under the custody of the Department of Children’s Services, yet didn’t die until nine days after he left. Despite this fact, in an investigation the two events have been marked as related.

According to Savon’s sister, after checking out of the lodge, he’d had troubling walking and kept bumping into things. Since Kinney was diabetic, it was of particular concern when he fell down and couldn’t get up.

He was then taken to hospital where he later died. Although an exact cause of death is still pending, a doctor has questioned the medication given to Savon while he was at the lodge.

Lawsuits and Controversies

These patient deaths and others have prompted some families to file lawsuits against the facility. And the DCS has stopped sending children under its care to the facility. Plus one large insurance provider has stopped referring patients to the facility entirely.

Controversies regarding over-crowding, lack of experienced staff, lack of enough staff, and staff members with mixed priorities, have all been in the press painting an ongoing negative picture of the facility.

Guest Author: Lolita Di

On the DISPATCH: Headlines  Local  Opinion

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