BRATTLEBORO -- After the Brattleboro Retreat came under scrutiny following a patient's death, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services told it that it was in danger of losing federal funding.
But on Thursday, Rob Simpson, CEO and president of the Retreat, told the Reformer that a survey team from CMS found the Retreat is in compliance with the conditions of participation for hospitals.
"The official word is that the regional office has rescinded the termination letter and we will be receiving notice in the immediate future that the termination date has been rescinded," Simpson said.
On Jan. 26, CMS conducted a complaint investigation at the Retreat, and notified administrators on Feb. 6 that the hospital was noncompliant with federal rules.
"The deficiencies have been determined to be of such a serious nature as to substantially limit the hospital's capacity to provide adequate care," wrote CMS Branch Chief Richard Shaw in a notice to the Retreat on June 15.
In response, the Retreat delivered a plan to address policies and procedures that will improve communication throughout the organization.
The plan is also meant to assure that adverse events are thoroughly reported and analyzed, and where necessary, corrective action is taken.
If the survey team had found the Retreat to be in non-compliance, the Retreat's Medicare funding would have been terminated on July 30.
Simpson told the Reformer
"She had spoken with the Regional Boston CMS Office and based upon local CMS survey team findings, the Brattleboro Retreat is deficiency free on all conditions of participation surveyed," he said.
Simpson also said the Boston Regional CMS office will publish a public notice in the Reformer stating the Brattleboro Retreat is back in full compliance.
"I am very proud of the efforts of my employees and the commitment they make each day to the patients who come to us for care," said Simpson.
Peter Albert, spokesman for the Retreat, said a CMS survey team was in Brattleboro for three days to make an assessment and review nine complaints.
"There was no finding at all on the complaints," said Albert. "And we are back in full compliance."
Albert will be in Montpelier today to speak with the Mental Health Oversight Committee about the Retreat's plan to begin accepting state mental health patients.
"The assessment will come up as part of the discussion," said Albert.
Bob Audette can be reached at email@example.com, or at 802-254-2311, ext. 160. Follow Bob on Twitter @shocked60.