The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Local and State News

June 24, 2013

Death of NORCE client investigation under way by DHS

ENID, Okla. — A 57-year-old resident at Northern Oklahoma Resource Center of Enid died last week, sparking a mandatory internal investigation by Department of Human Services.

Amy “Lynette” Williams was taken to St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center and died Thursday.

DHS spokeswoman Sheree Powell said the agency doesn’t yet have a cause of death. Because Williams was in the care of the state at NORCE, DHS will conduct an investigation.

“We always do a mortality review, which is kind of a review of all the staff’s actions, making sure all policies and procedures were followed,” Powell said.

A comprehensive review will be conducted by the Development Disabilities Services Division of DHS and is standard procedure, said Powell. Results of the review will not be released as a public record and are confidential, she said.

An investigator already has completed an initial look into the case. That initial review contains a personal profile of Williams, her medical history, initial information about the circumstances of her death, any recent pharmacology evaluations and the status of any medical examiner or law enforcement involvement, if applicable.

Once the full mortality review is complete, the reviewer will forward it to a committee made up of health care professionals, who can recommend changes to the system or procedures.

Williams’ parents, Bob and Linda live in Dumas, Texas. Bob is the vice president of the NORCE Parents and Guardians Association.

Service for Williams were scheduled for this morning in Dumas. An email sent to PGA stated there will be another memorial service at NORCE at a later time.

NORCE is a state-run facility that houses and cares for people with severe developmental disabilities. The facility is scheduled to shut down in 2015, along with a sister facility in Pauls Valley that will close next year.

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