Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Ban Hammer

Fla. hospital defends secretly deporting patient

24 posts in this topic

Recommended Posts

Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Brazil
Timeline

STUART, Fla. – All sides agree on one thing in the case of a South Florida hospital that secretly repatriated a seriously brain injured patient back to Guatemala.

During the early hours of a steamy July 2003 morning, Martin Memorial Medical Center chartered a private plane and sent Luis Jimenez back to the Central American country without telling his relatives in the U.S. or Guatemala — even as his cousin and legal guardian, Montejo Gaspar, frantically sought to stop the move.

There, things get murky. Gaspar is suing the hospital for essentially deporting Jimenez, who was an illegal immigrant. The hospital, which spent more than $1.5 million on his care over three years, says Jimenez wanted to go home.

Underlying the dispute is the broader question of what do Americans expect a hospital to do with a patient who requires long-term care, is unable to pay and doesn't qualify for federal or state aid because of his immigration status. Health care and immigration experts across the country are watching the case, which could set precedent in Florida and possibly beyond. Lawyers for Jimenez said this appears to be the first time a lawsuit has been filed in such a case.

In closing arguments Thursday, a lawyer for Gaspar and Jimenez said the hospital wanted to send Jimenez back to Guatemala to halt what would have been a long and expensive appeals process.

"The plan was designed once and for all to stop the meter from running, to stop the expenses ... to stop the case from going all the way up to the Supreme Court — because Luis Jimenez was gone," attorney Jack Hill told a packed courtroom in the sleepy South Florida town of Stuart, just north of the exclusive community of Palm Beach.

The case also raises the question of whether a hospital and a state court should be deciding whether to deport someone — a power long held by the federal government.

"Regardless of the decision, it will heighten the awareness of hospitals nationwide. The next time they debate shipping a patient overseas, they're going to have to do their homework because it's going to leave them open to a lot of legal challenges and questions," said Steve Larson, an assistant dean at the University of Pennsylvania's School of Medicine and medical director of a nonprofit clinic for Latino immigrants.

But Linda Quick, president of the South Florida Hospital & Healthcare Association, says hospitals may become even more wary about providing extended care to uninsured immigrants.

Hospitals are already struggling under the staggering costs of treating the nation's roughly 47 million uninsured. Illegal immigrants make up an estimated 15 percent of this group, according to the Pew Hispanic Center.

"I think they'll do what's required according to physician orders," she said, "but I think they will be more pro-active and aggressive in finding a discharge plan."

Like millions of others, Jimenez, now 37, came the U.S to work as a day laborer, sending money home to his wife and small children. In 2000, a drunk driver crashed into a van he was riding in, leaving the robust soccer player a paraplegic. For more than a year he lingered in a vegetative state before he began to recuperate, eventually reaching a fourth grade level in cognitive ability. The hospital sent him to a long-term care facility for a brief stint, but eventually he was returned to the hospital for care.

Because Jimenez has diminished capacity to make decisions, Gaspar was named as his legal guardian. Initially he supported Jimenez's return to Guatemala, but after a court-appointed attorney for Jimenez questioned whether any hospital there could take him, Gaspar grew concerned.

Then, armed with a vague letter from the Guatemalan minister of health stating the poverty-ridden country could care for Jimenez, the hospital got a county judge to OK the move.

While Gaspar sought an emergency order to stop the move so he could appeal the decision, the hospital put Jimenez on a $30,000 charter flight home.

Gaspar eventually won his appeal, with the court ruling a state judge doesn't have the power to decide immigration cases. By then, it was too late. Jimenez had been released from the Guatemalan hospital and was living with his 73-year-old mother in a one-room home in the mountainous state of Huehuetenango — a steep hike from the village center and 12 hours from the Guatemalan capital.

Jimenez's lawsuit seeks nearly $1 million to cover the estimated lifetime costs of his care in Guatemala, as well as damages for the hospital's alleged "false imprisonment" of his cousin.

A South Florida Roman Catholic priest described a visit to Jimenez in an e-mail to The Associated Press: "He was clean, glad of the visit and occasionally made apparently good sense comments," wrote the Rev. Frank O'Laughlin. "It seemed that he was cooperating with his caregiver and would survive, I guessed, until his first pneumonia."

O'Laughlin said he wasn't sure that Jimenez should be returned to "medical care in an alien Florida institution."

But he said the lawsuit is important because hospitals should not be allowed to deport people.

He and Larson also say a country that relies on cheap immigrant labor for everything from agriculture, to clothing to construction, should factor in the cost of catastrophic injuries to those providing these essential services — whether it means requiring employers to offer coverage for day laborers or ensuring public and nonprofit hospitals can care for them.

Carla Luggiero, a senior associate director for American Hospital Association, said that cases such as Jimenez's are rare. Most of the time, hospitals are able to work with the families to find acceptable care.

And most of the time families don't have pro bono lawyers working for them as Jimenez does.

But she also warned the issue is serious, and it is one Congress has yet to address in its health care reform proposals.

"There is absolutely no discussion about it," Luggiero said. And yet, hospitals that receive Medicare reimbursements are required to provide emergency care to all patients and must provide an acceptable discharge plan once the patient is stabilized.

"It's a complicated, huge issue. Without repatriation, the issue of undocumented immigrants is already a hand grenade and so is health care," Larson said. "So together, you're really walking a tightrope."

link


* ~ * Charles * ~ *
 

I carry a gun because a cop is too heavy.

 

USE THE REPORT BUTTON INSTEAD OF MESSAGING A MODERATOR!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Filed: AOS (apr) Country: Colombia
Timeline

Not the first case.

If it can be proven that the patient is legally able to allow it, then its the patient's right to do so. However...

hospitals are not deputized agents that work on behalf of USCIS and Border Patrol.

I am sure some of you are more likely to look at the legal status than the human one. To those of you I truly wish you do not ever have to suffer such an ailment.


Wishing you ten-fold that which you wish upon all others.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Brazil
Timeline
Not the first case.

If it can be proven that the patient is legally able to allow it, then its the patient's right to do so. However...

hospitals are not deputized agents that work on behalf of USCIS and Border Patrol.

I am sure some of you are more likely to look at the legal status than the human one. To those of you I truly wish you do not ever have to suffer such an ailment.

no comments on the bolded part?


* ~ * Charles * ~ *
 

I carry a gun because a cop is too heavy.

 

USE THE REPORT BUTTON INSTEAD OF MESSAGING A MODERATOR!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Filed: Lift. Cond. (apr) Country: Egypt
Timeline

He wanted to go home.


Don't just open your mouth and prove yourself a fool....put it in writing.

It gets harder the more you know. Because the more you find out, the uglier everything seems.

kodasmall3.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Filed: AOS (apr) Country: Colombia
Timeline
Not the first case.

If it can be proven that the patient is legally able to allow it, then its the patient's right to do so. However...

hospitals are not deputized agents that work on behalf of USCIS and Border Patrol.

I am sure some of you are more likely to look at the legal status than the human one. To those of you I truly wish you do not ever have to suffer such an ailment.

no comments on the bolded part?

Legals also receive pro-bono services.


Wishing you ten-fold that which you wish upon all others.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Brazil
Timeline
Not the first case.

If it can be proven that the patient is legally able to allow it, then its the patient's right to do so. However...

hospitals are not deputized agents that work on behalf of USCIS and Border Patrol.

I am sure some of you are more likely to look at the legal status than the human one. To those of you I truly wish you do not ever have to suffer such an ailment.

no comments on the bolded part?

Legals also receive pro-bono services.

and that's it?


* ~ * Charles * ~ *
 

I carry a gun because a cop is too heavy.

 

USE THE REPORT BUTTON INSTEAD OF MESSAGING A MODERATOR!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Filed: AOS (apr) Country: Colombia
Timeline
Not the first case.

If it can be proven that the patient is legally able to allow it, then its the patient's right to do so. However...

hospitals are not deputized agents that work on behalf of USCIS and Border Patrol.

I am sure some of you are more likely to look at the legal status than the human one. To those of you I truly wish you do not ever have to suffer such an ailment.

no comments on the bolded part?

Legals also receive pro-bono services.

and that's it?

What more do you want? An itemization for services rendered? :P


Wishing you ten-fold that which you wish upon all others.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Filed: Country: United Kingdom
Timeline
What more do you want? An itemization for services rendered? :P

I want the bill to be sent to the Government of Guatemala.

Or better still, next time the Federal Reserve extends a currency swap line to Guatemala,

deduct those expenses automatically.


biden_pinhead.jpgspace.gifrolling-stones-american-flag-tongue.jpgspace.gifinside-geico.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Filed: AOS (apr) Country: Colombia
Timeline
What more do you want? An itemization for services rendered? :P

I want the bill to be sent to the Government of Guatemala.

Or better still, next time the Federal Reserve extends a currency swap line to Guatemala,

deduct those expenses automatically.

Perhaps the Government of Guatemala can also nationalize assets from United Fruit Co types and Chiquita Bananas too to make up for decades of exploitative labor practices. ;)


Wishing you ten-fold that which you wish upon all others.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Filed: Country: United Kingdom
Timeline
What more do you want? An itemization for services rendered? :P

I want the bill to be sent to the Government of Guatemala.

Or better still, next time the Federal Reserve extends a currency swap line to Guatemala,

deduct those expenses automatically.

Perhaps the Government of Guatemala can also nationalize assets from United Fruit Co types and Chiquita Bananas too to make up for decades of exploitative labor practices. ;)

Ah - the "victim card". I'm shocked! :lol:


biden_pinhead.jpgspace.gifrolling-stones-american-flag-tongue.jpgspace.gifinside-geico.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hospitals are already struggling under the staggering costs of treating the nation's roughly 47 million uninsured. Illegal immigrants make up an estimated 15 percent of this group, according to the Pew Hispanic Center.

"It's a complicated, huge issue. Without repatriation, the issue of undocumented immigrants is already a hand grenade and so is health care," Larson said. "So together, you're really walking a tightrope."

link

If we can pick and choose which parts of the article to highlight, I choose these


Refusing to use the spellchick!

I have put you on ignore. No really, I have, but you are still ruining my enjoyment of this site. .

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Filed: AOS (apr) Country: Colombia
Timeline
What more do you want? An itemization for services rendered? :P

I want the bill to be sent to the Government of Guatemala.

Or better still, next time the Federal Reserve extends a currency swap line to Guatemala,

deduct those expenses automatically.

Perhaps the Government of Guatemala can also nationalize assets from United Fruit Co types and Chiquita Bananas too to make up for decades of exploitative labor practices. ;)

Ah - the "victim card". I'm shocked! :lol:

Yeah and a bill statement to Guatemala isn't. 'Priceless' :P

{Yes- its cause and effect}


Wishing you ten-fold that which you wish upon all others.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Brazil
Timeline
What more do you want? An itemization for services rendered? :P

I want the bill to be sent to the Government of Guatemala.

Or better still, next time the Federal Reserve extends a currency swap line to Guatemala,

deduct those expenses automatically.

Perhaps the Government of Guatemala can also nationalize assets from United Fruit Co types and Chiquita Bananas too to make up for decades of exploitative labor practices. ;)

Ah - the "victim card". I'm shocked! :lol:

it's all about getting one in on the man!


* ~ * Charles * ~ *
 

I carry a gun because a cop is too heavy.

 

USE THE REPORT BUTTON INSTEAD OF MESSAGING A MODERATOR!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Filed: Timeline
Not the first case.

If it can be proven that the patient is legally able to allow it, then its the patient's right to do so. However...

hospitals are not deputized agents that work on behalf of USCIS and Border Patrol.

I am sure some of you are more likely to look at the legal status than the human one. To those of you I truly wish you do not ever have to suffer such an ailment.

no comments on the bolded part?

Legals also receive pro-bono services.

and that's it?

What more do you want? An itemization for services rendered? :P

No, he wants what we all want. For others to share our outrage.


Man is made by his belief. As he believes, so he is.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
- Back to Top -


Important Disclaimer: Please read carefully the Visajourney.com Terms of Service. If you do not agree to the Terms of Service you should not access or view any page (including this page) on VisaJourney.com. Answers and comments provided on Visajourney.com Forums are general information, and are not intended to substitute for informed professional medical, psychiatric, psychological, tax, legal, investment, accounting, or other professional advice. Visajourney.com does not endorse, and expressly disclaims liability for any product, manufacturer, distributor, service or service provider mentioned or any opinion expressed in answers or comments. VisaJourney.com does not condone immigration fraud in any way, shape or manner. VisaJourney.com recommends that if any member or user knows directly of someone involved in fraudulent or illegal activity, that they report such activity directly to the Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement. You can contact ICE via email at Immigration.Reply@dhs.gov or you can telephone ICE at 1-866-347-2423. All reported threads/posts containing reference to immigration fraud or illegal activities will be removed from this board. If you feel that you have found inappropriate content, please let us know by contacting us here with a url link to that content. Thank you.
×
×
  • Create New...