Legal Question in Medical Malpractice in Ohio

I am not sure if I have a case or not, but here is my story:

On August 1st I called a local private mental health institute for more information regarding treatment. I told them I was just put on FMLA for depression/anxiety and was looking for treatment options. I was told by phone that my insurance only covered in-patient and was out of network for out-patient. I was asked to come in for an appointment at 4 that day. I was also asked to pack for an overnight visit, just in case we decided to do the treatment plan.

At 4 o'clock myself, husband, and son went for the appointment. They asked me questions such as was I suicidal. I told them I was not. Earlier in the week (on Monday, July 28th, 2014) I had a fleeting thought (which my primary doctor described as loose ideation), but then I would think of my son and quickly dismiss any ideas. I also told them that I had an attempt on Father's Day 2013, so I knew the signs to look for. At that point I had been off work for 5 days and my stress levels were low. I just wanted treatment options to help me so I was able to go back to work and not have re-occurring episodes.

I was signing papers, for what my husband and I thought was a consent of treatment for what we saw on their website, and before I knew it I was up on the locked floor and was told I was not allowed to leave. My husband and son were still with me. When my husband and I quickly realized I was admitted for suicide watch, even though I told them I was NOT suicidal, we told them we needed to leave. I was told I was not allowed to. I was then threatened by a nurse who told me if I didn't cooperate, she could get me on a 72 hour hold and that the weekends didn't count (it was a Friday afternoon when we went for our visit). My husband, who has his Master's in Counseling and is licensed in the State of Ohio, tried to explain that I did not display the signs of a suicidal person. We were told that I was not allowed to leave until I saw a psychologist who would not be there until the next morning! I was literally held at this facility like a prisoner! NONE of the treatment programs I thought I would have access to where even offered while I was locked up. It turns out it was ONLY for a different building on a different campus, which my insurance doesn't even cover.

My mom picked up my son but my husband stayed with me the entire time on the floor. I was also told I had to strip naked and have a nurse see me completely naked which I was NOT okay with and would have NEVER agreed to! But I was told I could not go to my room unless I was violated (this of course is my term). I felt so humiliated and my rights were taken away from me for no reason. And now typing this is bringing me back to that day and making me extremely upset reliving what I went through.

So the next day I saw the psychologist and after reviewing my case she was baffled as to why I was in there too. She immediately started the release process and I was home by the afternoon. It is also important to note that I saw therapist not related to this mental health facility a few days prior to going to the mental facility and she didn't see signs that I should be committed for suicidal reasons.

I would have written a complaint sooner but I was so beside myself. And as time went on I just didn't want to think about those 18 hours. But today I received a bill. The audacity of them to send me a bill when they held me captive!

*Also, I am not sure what type of law this would fall under...I am assuming medical malpractice? Although I was not hurt physically, I was held against my will.


Asked on 10/19/14, 7:49 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

James Slater Slater & Zurz LLP

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Answered on 10/19/14, 7:55 pm


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