ZACHARY, La. (LOCAL 33) (FOX 44) Newly obtained documents from the Louisiana Department of Health reveal history of neglect at the Andover Home for developmental disabilities in Zachary.
Failure to prevent infection, urine smell, feces stains, and unexplained, unreported injuries are reported in more than 300 documents released by the health department. The documents include surveys completed from 2015 to 2019.
The issues stated in the surveys were addressed by the Health Department with a “corrective action plan.”
A report from 2016 stated observation of a staff member who took care of bathroom duties for multiple clients, continued to wash another client’s face, touched the bristles of his toothbrush and proceeded to fix food for the clients of the home without changing gloves a single time. According to the report, that staff member said, “He was aware it was cross contamination.”
“To clean up several different people with one pair of gloves, and then serve them food, nobody deserves that. Prisoners get treated better than that,” Neighbor Donna Sharp said.
Sharp said she used to go on walks down Sutter Lane where the home is located, but no longer does because it smells so bad, and there are usually soiled diapers spilled on the roadway.
In an interview conducted in November of 2017 a staff member stated “not to use this bathroom because feces were coming up from the drain into the shower and toilet bowl.” Feces covering the floor of the standing shower, and feces in the toilet bowl were also observed.
“I had no idea it was that bad. That’s disturbing,” Sharp said.
The Louisiana Department of Health says these issues have since been corrected.
In August a client escaped and attempted to break into a neighbor’s home when he was shot. The East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office confirms he is still hospitalized in critical, but stable condition.
“Imagine what his parents are going through, I mean they are paying to have him taken care of, and he’s not being taken care of,” Sharp said.
Among other issues, there are complaints from staff about being untrained, and understaffed. In 2018 a staff member stated that “if something were to happen out of the ordinary there would not be enough staff to care for and supervise all of the clients.”
NBC 33/FOX 44 has called Louise Davis Management for comment several times but have yet to hear back. The Department of Health confirmed they are investigating the Andover Home from a “licensing standpoint,” and a corrective action plan has been put in place since the shooting incident in August.