Mon | May 17, 2021

Health department to take legal action against rehabilitation centre

Published:Thursday | April 15, 2021 | 12:05 AMBryan Miller/Gleaner Writer

WESTERN BUREAU:

THE HANOVER Public Health Department (HHD) is to initiate court action against the operators of the Chances Rehabilitation Centre, which is not only operating without the requisite permission from the Hanover Municipal Corporation (HMC), but is also in breach of health and safety requirements.

After basically ignoring all the efforts by the HHD to bring them into compliance since it relocated from St James to Hanover in November 2020, the facility, which started out with 41 patients under its care, was ordered closed by the HHD on January 29.

However, at the most recent monthly meeting of the HMC, it was revealed that the operator of the centre continues to operate in defiance of the closure notice that was issued.

ILLEGAL OPERATION

“Chances Rehabilitation Centre continues to operate illegally in the community of Rejoin, and the HHD has been preparing the case for further legal actions to be taken on the owner and/or the operator of that facility,” Patricia Hall-Patterson, the chief public health inspector for Hanover, told the meeting.

Hall-Patterson further noted that the HHD continues to monitor the rehabilitation centre, which now has a population of 37 residents, comprising 34 males and three females.

To compound the situation, Devon Brown, the councillor for the Hopewell division, told the meeting that it has come to his attention that the residents in Rejoin and adjoining communities are concerned that the residents, some of whom have mental health conditions, are roaming the streets of the rural districts daily.

Although Hall-Patterson could not say how soon legal action will be taken against the operators of the centre, she also reported that another health facility, which is also operating illegally in the parish, is to be served a closure notice as they, too, had ignored a two-day notice to improve their facilities and operations.