State Authorities Dismiss Mental Backlog: Three hospital systems are suing the Oregon Health Authority, claiming they are being unfairly burdened with civilly committed mental health patients. The Oregon Health Authority’s attorneys have urged a court to dismiss the case.
Disability Rights Oregon has also requested a say in the matter, claiming that the hospitals aren’t looking out for the interests of their patients and that their complaint amounts to an admission of subpar treatment. In essence, the hospitals had put the responsibility for breaches of human rights on the state, while the new files place the guilt on the institutions.
The most recent filings follow lawsuits Legacy Health, Providence Health & Services, and PeaceHealth filed against the Eugene health authority in September, alleging that doing so violated patients’ civil rights by keeping them in hospital acute care facilities when they would have received better care at the Oregon State Hospital or other long-term care facilities.
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Last Monday, state attorneys replied, contending that prior court decisions and Oregon law refute the hospitals’ claim that they are burdened because the health authority has failed to fulfil its duty to locate long-term homes for patients confined to acute care units. According to the petition, which asks Judge Michael Mosman to dismiss the claim.
At most, Plaintiffs contend that their beds are not as excellent as beds at the Oregon State Hospital or other placements and that they are not reimbursed enough for caring civilly committed people.” “There is no reasonable basis for relief based on these accusations.”
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Regarding the hospitals’ assertion that they were “forced” to lodge patients with civil commitments, the state attorneys provided PDF iron filings demonstrating that the facilities explicitly requested to do so—arguing that the hospitals had acted willingly. Oregon has had trouble finding enough spaces in the state-run psychiatric hospital or in other facilities for mentally ill persons who have been ordered to get treatment, which has prompted the legal tussle.
It comes after years of legal disputes over how the Oregon State Hospital handled people who were admitted after receiving treatment orders from the criminal justice system. In September, Mosman issued a historic decision that established a waiting list for new patients and set a deadline for how long the state hospital might take to allow certain patients to participate in their defence.
Civil Rights Offences Of Hospitals Allegedly
In their September complaint, the three healthcare organisations contended that acute care facilities should only be used as a first resort to stabilise patients awaiting civil commitment. However, hospitals have been required to keep these patients in their care for weeks or even the duration of their commitment.
The complaint claimed that since the health authority disregarded cries for assistance, hospital staff members were placed at risk while caring for hostile patients. It presented other instances, such as the five-month stay of a patient who assaulted a nurse and threatened to murder staff.
The health authority has considerable discretion over where to send patients who have been civilly committed or who are getting emergency treatment, according to provisions in Oregon law cited in the state’s latest move to dismiss the lawsuit. A patient wait list created by Mossman’s injunction restricts the public hospital’s ability to treat patients, according to the legal brief from the state.
According to the state lawyers’ filing, the hospitals want to “exclude civilly committed persons from receiving care at their hospitals to avoid incurring “expenses for additional staff and workers’ compensation costs, property damage, and room closures,” despite the fact that they have positioned themselves as advocating on behalf of patients rather than just themselves.
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Disability Rights Oregon, an organisation that has previously fought on behalf of patients in state hospitals, petitioned the court for permission to write a brief in support of the health authority’s move to dismiss the case on the same day the state filed its motion, on December 22.
The group’s proposed brief for the case, available in PDF, states that the interests of the hospitals involved in the lawsuit and the patients who have been given civil commitments are “fundamentally at odds,” and that the hospitals “basically admitted in their own pleadings to routine violations of patient rights by imposing unnecessarily restrictive conditions on them.”
The institutions “declare on their own behalf that their rights are infringed each time they are required to care for an undesired patient,” according to the group’s brief. While more patients with civil commitments are being admitted to community hospitals, Disability Rights Oregon also said in the brief that “no one has barred community hospitals from enhancing their overall treatment for behavioural health patients.” The hospitals’ attorneys have not yet submitted a response. Maintain Your Current Awareness by Reading the Most Recent News on Our Website Focus Hillsboro.