Pembroke Pines Hospital Deaths Trigger Investigation

PEMBROKE PINES (CBSMiami/NSF) – South Florida State Hospital is under investigation after three patients died last summer: one highly medicated patient died in a scalding bath tub, another died after jumping from the top of a building while away from the hospital for an appointment.

The investigation is being conducted by the Florida Department of Children and Families (DCF).

Boca Raton-based Geo Group, Inc., has a contract with the state to run the Broward County psychiatric facility. DCF Secretary David Wilkins said the agency is renegotiating Geo Group’s contract, including the addition of a requirement that a DCF investigator be on site.

The three deaths were not reported to a state abuse hotline, which would have spurred formal investigations. Wilkins said the new contract will require that such incidents be reported to the hotline or Geo Group will get fined. Geo Group declined to comment.

The News Service of Florida contributed to this report.

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