A Growing Number of California Patients Are Refusing Medical Treatment

by Staff Blogger | May 3rd, 2012

April 30, 2012

A newborn child in Folsom, California, is at the center of a debate over patient rights. According to the Sacramento Bee, the child’s parents claim their rights to refuse medical treatment were violated the day the child was born.

The controversy began on April 11 at Mercy Hospital, where the child’s father was the former chief of staff. The parents had decided on a natural childbirth and followed through with the decision as the father, who is also a medical doctor, delivered the child without the use of any medications. Less than 12 hours later, medical staff protested as the parents decided to leave the hospital after refusing medical treatment for both the mother and child. Medical staff then contacted child protective services to investigate.

The couple has since filed a complaint against the hospital saying their rights were violated. The father added, “If this could happen to me, a doctor with privileges at the hospital, how is an 18-year-old who may not know her rights treated?”

Statistics from the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Research show that 77 out of every 10,000 patients at Sacramento-area hospitals were discharged against doctor’s advice in 201. That is a 45 percent increase in the number from 2002.

The California Accident Lawyers with Berg Injury Lawyers encourage anyone who disagrees with their doctor’s diagnosis of their condition to seek a second opinion from another qualified medical professional.