State finds filth, bed bugs at Valley assisted living home exposed in ABC15 Investigation

PHOENIX - A state health department investigation was launched because an ABC15 report found multiple problems at an assisted living facility for disabled and vulnerable adults, records show.

Inspectors with the Arizona Health Services Department visited The Lodge at 14th Street two days after an undercover ABC15 investigation.

The facility was forced to file a plan of correction and fix the problems. At this point, it's not clear if further action will be taken against the facility or its management.

The full inspection report and plan of correction was released to ABC15 through a public records request.

State inspection mirrors ABC15 investigation

In late February, the ABC15 Investigators went undercover at The Lodge and shot or obtained videos and pictures to document the conditions.

Our report revealed filthy rooms, residents in tattered and dirty clothing, blood- and bug-stained mattresses without sheets or blankets, and evidence of past and current bed bug problems.

State inspectors found the exact same problems.

In addition, they found issues with a lack of proof of employee certifications and background checks.

History of Problems

In the past two years, the state health department and adult protective services came to The Lodge five times, records show. Officials found problems with bed bugs and medication but didn’t take further action.

In 2007, the Arizona State Board of Nursing Home Administrators and Assisted Living Facility Managers fined The Lodge’s manager, Steven Martin, and put him on probation after 51 deficiencies were found in 15 different areas.

Martin still manages The Lodge.

ABC15 checked with the state board to see if it's opened any new cases against The Lodge’s management. The board’s executive director said that it’s typically up to the health department to notify the board of any problems.

So far, that has not happened.

Owner Responds

ABC15 spoke with The Lodge’s owner, Austin Coggins, about the state inspection.

“We’ve made a ton of improvements and met all of the requirements of the state and things are going great,” Coggins said.

When asked why Steven Martin still manages the facility after a documented history of deficiencies, he said, “We’ve got the help around him that he needs. He has an excellent track record. I wasn’t here in 2007, so I don’t know the details of that. But during my time here, he’s done a good job.”

Contact ABC15 Investigator Dave Biscobing at dbiscobing@abc15.com . You can also following him on Twitter @davebiscobing15 .

 

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