In the Courts: Psychiatrist’s Concerns about Leave of Absence Not Communicated

March 1, 2013 | Aging Services Risk, Quality, & Safety Guidance

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An administrative law judge (ALJ) has upheld a per-instance civil monetary penalty of $8,500 against a long-term care facility for failing to tell a resident's physician of a consulting psychiatrist's concerns about granting the resident an independent leave of absence.

The 60-year-old resident was admitted on September 28, 2010. He had left-side hemiparesis due to stroke, hypertension, acute kidney injury, and cardiomyopathy secondary to cocaine and alcohol abuse. He received antipsychotic medication three times per day, plus pain and other medications. He gradually made significant progress, and by early 2011, he was preparing for discharge. He wanted to take an independent leave...

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