PHOENIX (AP/FOX 10) - Arizona's governor is looking into whether the state can remove the board of directors of a long-term care facility where a nurse is accused of raping an incapacitated woman who later gave birth.
In a flurry of tweets Friday, Gov. Doug Ducey called for Hacienda HealthCare's board to be fired.
I am sickened by what’s been disclosed about the rape and subsequent childbirth by a disabled woman at Hacienda HealthCare. And, I’m appalled by the latest disclosure about the senior leadership’s behavior and the lack of action by its board of directors. 1/6— Doug Ducey (@dougducey) January 25, 2019
The senior leadership in that enterprise needs to be completely replaced. That includes the Board of Directors, every one of whom should be terminated immediately. 2/6— Doug Ducey (@dougducey) January 25, 2019
There are patients who are in Hacienda’s care, and we’re going to do everything possible to get them safe care and ensure that they’re not in harm’s way. 3/6— Doug Ducey (@dougducey) January 25, 2019
My confidence level in that institution and its leadership is zero, and our job now is to ensure that the individuals in their facilities are safe. 4/6— Doug Ducey (@dougducey) January 25, 2019
This guy should have been fired years ago. Period. Instead, he was protected and allowed to continue harming others. That’s unacceptable. Arizona has already begun taking aggressive actions against Hacienda to ensure patients are protected. 5/6— Doug Ducey (@dougducey) January 25, 2019
Now, we are looking into what can be done to hold this facility and board accountable for violating the public’s trust and failing in their responsibility so badly. Our agencies are reviewing the best course of action, but I can assure you Arizona will not tolerate this. 6/6— Doug Ducey (@dougducey) January 25, 2019
Police arrested 36-year-old Nathan Sutherland on Wednesday. An online database shows Sutherland has since voluntarily surrendered his nursing license.
Meanwhile, the board of directors of Hacienda HealthCare says it's taken aggressive measures to improve patient care and safety. They released a statement Friday in response to Gov. Ducey's tweets.
In the statement, the board says it has followed a state request to have an outside team manage the facility, and that they should be in place by next week.
The Associated Press (AP) contributed to this report.