DHEC started an enforcement action against Palmetto Pee Dee Behavioral Health after several policy violations.
News 13 tried talking to treatment center, but CEO Daniel Eichelberger had not time to talk about the violations, instead we received an email saying:
“We are working directly with the Department of Health and Environmental Control, other appropriate agencies and law enforcement to investigate the allegations. We have received this report and have responded to the state with actions to be taken in response to the allegations, includig confirming our policies, procedures, additional staff training and disciplinary action taken. Palmetto Pee Dee Behavioral Health is committed to providing high quality treatment and care for individuals with special, and often complex, mental health needs. We hold our staff accountable and have high expectation for staff interaction with patients, with their peers and in support of our local community.”
News 13 obtained over 20 pages of violations that claim the center didn’t have enough staff, the facility physically restrained residents against policy and they didn’t follow doctors orders or properly document administering some drugs.
The reports claim back in October 2018 a patient got slapped in the face, and claims on other occasions kids were taken to areas without cameras and hit.
Lt. Mike Brandt with the Florence police department said in 2018, 35 reports were filed regarding the facility, 21 of those reports were for missing person or runaway incidents, but said no reports were filed against a staff member.
News 13 spoke to a former patient and his mother who want something done about the facility.
“That family and parents get justice. I really do hope that they shutdown and are not allowed to continue to operate because it’s not right,” said mother Jennifer Blunt.
DHEC invited the facility for an enforcement conference scheduled for March 28. Stay with WBTW for updates on this story.