Conyers, Georgia – Police in Georgia are looking for answers after a hospital kicked a very sick, elderly man out because Medicare stopped paying for his care.
A concerned citizen called 911 after seeing the 68-year-old man on a sidewalk in Conyers, Georgia. The man, who has not been identified, was laying on the sidewalk, unresponsive, and still had medical tubes attached to him.
Conyers Police Deputy Chief Scott Freeman, the officer who responded to the call and found the man, said he is concerned about the man based on what he saw and thinks the man was treated inhumanely.
“Common sense dictates that you do not treat human beings the way that we’re seeing in this particular case,” Freeman said.
Freeman said that when emergency responders arrived, the man had a fever, signs of sepsis, a urinary tract infection, and an elevated heart rate.
“(He was) literally ejected out to the sidewalk with no help whatsoever,” Freeman said. “I think it’s inhumane. He was clearly incoherent. That’s just not how we treat people here in this city or this country.”
According to Freeman, the man had been discharged from the nearby Piedmont Rockdale Hospital on Thursday. An employee told officers that the man had been at the hospital for 25 days and Medicare would not continue to pay for his treatment. The employee said that security dressed the man and walked him out.
Newsweek reported that Freeman plans on filing a complaint with the state’s Department of Community Health regarding the incident.
“I think that someone who is a regulatory body needs to take a look inside and see what’s going on inside this hospital, before someone is put out onto the sidewalk, and the police aren’t there to save them,” he said.
In a statement to Newsweek about the incident, Piedmont Healthcare said:
“At Piedmont, our purpose is to make a positive difference in every life we touch.”
“We can only provide the best care with the cooperation and consent of the patient. Unfortunately, it’s too common for hospitals and communities across the country to take care of patients who have nowhere to go, or no one to help them, upon release from the hospital. We do our best to connect patients in need with community partners and social service organizations to provide appropriate after-hospital care, but ultimately accepting these services is at the discretion of the patient.”