LA files more patient dumping cases

Los Angeles city attorneys have filed another group of patient dumping cases as part of an ongoing investigation. This time, the office has targeted Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center in Los Feliz and Methodist Hospital in Arcadia, along with transportation service Empire Enterprises.

The city cited the organizations for four incidents, including one infamous case in which Empire allegedly left a homeless paraplegic man with a colostomy crawling in a Skid Row gutter. In each case, the hospitals dispatched patients down to Skid Row without adequate plans for follow-up care to avoid having to care for them, the city attorneys claim. The case seeks fines against the hospitals, as well as a judge's order forbidding patient dumping.

City attorneys are hoping to use a state law used to prosecute accused slumlords to pursue the alleged offenders. (It's not clear whether this behavior would violate EMTALA; the feds haven't weighed in.) Meanwhile, the state of California is considering a bill that would outlaw patient dumping by hospitals.

To find out more about the cases:
- read this Los Angeles Times article

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