Maryland Hospital Cited Over Woman Left in Cold in Hospital Gown

Federal regulators have cited a Baltimore hospital in connection with a January incident in which a mentally ill woman was discharged and left at an open-air bus stop wearing only a flimsy gown and socks. 

The Baltimore Sun reported Tuesday that a Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services investigation found the University of Maryland Medical Center violated patient rights as well as several patient safety and hospital management regulations. 

The 22-year-old woman had been treated for a head wound, but authorities say she became resistant while being discharged. Security intervened and escorted the visibly disoriented woman outside, where temperatures were in the 30s. 

Cheryl Chandler, the woman's mother, said she was only made aware of her missing daughter's predicament on the night of Jan. 9 when she happened upon a viral video shot by a passer-by enraged at the way she was treated. 

Chandler said her daughter has been struggling intensely with mental illness since she was 16. Over the past year-and-a-half, she has cycled through a couple of residential facilities for mentally ill clients. 

"My daughter did not choose to be the face of mental illness. She didn't choose to be an example of the impact of a failed mental health care system. She was an individual in need of services," Chandler said during a press conference in January, adding that she was "eternally grateful" to psychotherapist Imamu Baraka for shooting the cellphone video showing her daughter's condition. 

The hospital, which previously apologized for a lack of "basic humanity and compassion," has outlined a corrective plan in response to the violations.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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