ARIZONA NEWS

Woman with son in coma at Hacienda HealthCare praises the facility

Jan 10, 2019, 6:33 PM | Updated: Jan 23, 2019, 10:49 am
(Google Street View)...
(Google Street View)
(Google Street View)

PHOENIX – A woman with an adult son being cared for at Hacienda HealthCare spoke highly of the Phoenix facility where a woman in a vegetative state recently gave birth.

Karen Longer said she searched for a month for a place to care for her son, who is in a coma, and found most of the facilities to be “disgusting” and “dirty.”

“And we walked into Hacienda, and the people were so nice, and they were so caring. We said, ‘This is the place we have to put him,’” she told KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Mac & Gaydos on Thursday.

In the two years he’s been at the facility near 16th Street and South Mountain Avenue, Longer said her son, now 26, has been treated with nothing but respect despite his condition.

Longer said she was sick to her stomach to learn that a 29-year-old woman in a vegetative state for more than a decade had given birth at Hacienda on Dec. 29.

The Phoenix Police Department is conducting a sexual assault investigation and has collected DNA samples from male staffers.

The facility specializes in providing around-the-clock care for infants, children and young adults with developmental disabilities or who are “medically fragile.”

Since the birth came to light, Hacienda has implemented increased safety measures, including more than one staff member being present during patient interactions and more scrutiny of visitors.

The company has said it welcomes DNA testing of its male staffers and is cooperating in the investigation.

Longer blamed whomever impregnated the woman, whether it was an employee or somebody else, for ruining Hacienda’s reputation.

She said the incident has been difficult on the staff.

“Most of the people who I know and I’ve met have been nothing but caring,” she said.

“These patients are like their family to them. Right now they’re very upset, they’re very depressed.”

She said she hopes the facility isn’t forced to close, not just for her son’s sake, but because many of the patients have no advocates and are either wards of the state or don’t have family in Arizona.

“Most people do not have anybody to speak for them, and Hacienda is their family, and this is all they know,” she said.

Longer described two patients she calls “Romeo and Juliet” who are immobile and can barely speak but fell in love and hold hands all day.

“If you shut this place down and you separate them, you would devastate them,” she said.

Despite her fondness for Hacienda, Longer said she is looking into putting a security camera in her son’s room after the recent events.

“Only if they let me. They’re checking it out legally with their attorneys and the HIPAA laws,” she said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Lifetime Windows & Doors

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

(AP File Photo)...
Kevin Stone

Arizona man sentenced to 15 years for selling fentanyl that caused fatal OD

An Arizona man was sentenced Tuesday to 15 years in federal prison for supplying the fentanyl that killed a woman 2½ years ago.
24 hours ago
(Facebook File Photo/Phoenix Police Department)...
KTAR.com

Pedestrian crossing street killed in Laveen following hit-and-run

Phoenix police are investigating a fatal hit-and-run collision after a pedestrian died Tuesday evening in Laveen Village.
24 hours ago
(Coronado National Forest Photo)...
Kevin Stone

Forest officials warn visitors about shipping container wall at Arizona border

Officials are warning Coronado National Forest visitors about potential safety hazards related to shipping container border wall construction in southern Arizona.
24 hours ago
Shaqueila Hudson (Maricopa County Sheriff's Office Photo)...
KTAR.com

Woman accused of fatally stabbing father during argument in Phoenix

A woman was arrested for allegedly stabbing her father to death during an argument Tuesday in Phoenix, authorities said.
24 hours ago
(Photos via Buckeye Police Department)...
KTAR.com

Buckeye Police boost reward to $12,000 for tips in fatal hit-and-run of 16-year-old girl

Authorities have upped the reward for tips in the fatal hit-and-run of a 16-year-old girl more than two years ago in Buckeye.
24 hours ago
(AP Photo/Matt Rourke)...
KTAR.com

Mesa police fatally shoot man who allegedly drove into patrol vehicle

Police shot and killed a man who allegedly drove into a patrol vehicle outside a Mesa convenience store early Wednesday.
24 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

(Desert Institute for Spine Care photo)...
DESERT INSTITUTE FOR SPINE CARE

Why DISC is world renowned for back and neck pain treatments

Fifty percent of Americans and 90% of people at least 50 years old have some level of degenerative disc disease.
...
Quantum Fiber

How high-speed fiber internet can improve everyday life

Quantum Fiber supplies unlimited data with speeds up to 940 mbps, enough to share 4K videos with coworkers 20 times faster than a cable.
...
SCHWARTZ LASER EYE CENTER

Key dates for Arizona sports fans to look forward to this fall

Fall brings new beginnings in different ways for Arizona’s professional sports teams like the Cardinals and Coyotes.
Woman with son in coma at Hacienda HealthCare praises the facility