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Responsibilities and liabilities

Mr. Roland Jones, a patient of Dr. Reed Simon, has a history of mental illness. Mr. Jones is taking Depakote (medication for bipolar patients), but was hospitalized because he has been having increased symptoms of hallucinations and convulsions. Mr. Jones has no known family, at least in the area, and insists on going home because he is "afraid of these nurses." Dr. Simon refused to release the patient, so Mr. Jones sneaked out of the hospital. He was found approximately three hours later near the side of the road (approximately 2 miles from the hospital) and was non-responsive.

1. What responsibilities and liabilities does the hospital have? Dr. Simon? Any other health care professionals involved?

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The hospital is only responsible for any injury to Mr. Jones as a result of improper care. Dr. Simon did not release Mr. Jones as he felt the patient's condition might be detrimental to his health and emotional state. He may have felt that Mr. Jones was not stable enough to function outside the hospital, due to hallucinations and convulsions. However, according to the Joint Commission the hospital and Dr. Simon may be liable if they did not do everything possible to ...

Solution Summary

Responsibilities and liabilities are examined for hospitals.