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LEGAL Vermont woman held against will in psych ward ordered released
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  1. #1
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    Vermont woman held against will in psych ward ordered released

    Vermont woman held against will in psych ward ordered released



    Published January 25, 2014

    | Associated Press




    BURLINGTON, Vt. A Vermont woman held against her will for more than five weeks at a psychiatric ward after her estranged husband killed their son and then hanged himself was ordered released by a judge Friday.

    Christina Schumacher, 48, was ordered released immediately from Fletcher Allen Health Care in Burlington by Vermont Superior Court Judge Kevin Griffin, the Burlington Free Press reported.

    Schumacher had been at the hospital since Dec. 19, a day after 14-year-old Gunnar Schumacher and 49-year-old Ludwig Schumacher were found dead in an Essex apartment. Police said the father strangled the high school freshman before he hanged himself.

    It was unclear whether Schumacher had left the facility by Friday night.

    Griffin said in his ruling that he disagreed with a doctor's assessment before Schumacher arrived for a regular appointment the day after the murder-suicide that she needed to admit herself or be taken into custody.

    "The court did not find, by clear and convincing evidence, that Respondent was a person in need of treatment at the time of admission or application, nor a patient in need of further treatment at the time of the hearing," Griffin wrote in his ruling.

    The Burlington Free Press reported that, according to court records, Schumacher indicated to her sister after the couple separated last summer that she would kill herself if anything happened to her two children.

    "I am not ill; I am simply a mother who is grieving the tragic loss of her young son," Schumacher told the Burlington Free Press this week. "No mother should ever have to experience this loss."

    Schumacher told the newspaper that she and her insurance company had been billed for the unwanted treatment.

    Mike Noble, a spokesman for the hospital, said that he can't speak to the specifics of the case but "that in all matters such as this we make decisions that we think are in the best interests of the patient."

    Schumacher had warned police that she feared for her son's safety hours before the bodies were found, according to court papers. She told Essex police the night before the murder-suicide that she feared Ludwig Schumacher might try to take the teenager out of the country, according to court papers.

    Ludwig Schumacher was a former member of the Vermont National Guard and state Republican campaign official. Police said he left a typed suicide note in the apartment.

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    http://www.foxnews.com/us/2014/01/25...ered-released/

  2. #2
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    A Vermont woman held against her will for more than five weeks at a psychiatric ward

    ...

    Schumacher told the newspaper that she and her insurance company had been billed for the unwanted treatment.



    What's wrong with this picture?

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    I see a woman becoming very rich in the near future.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Publius View Post
    I see a woman becoming very rich in the near future.
    Depends on the state laws.
    In some states some shrinks can commit ANYONE if, in said shrinks professional opinion, that ANYONE is a threat to themselves or others.
    Case Law may have changed, but in either 1996 or 97 we video taped an psyc evaluation and the MD decided, on camara, that the patient needed a long rest in Happy Acres.
    When she got out, six months later, she sued everyone involved.
    We, video crew, got served and after being deposed, were dismissed from the case.
    As might be imagined we followed the case quite closely and were amazed when the trial court dismissed the suit citing professional privilege.

    6 months in a phsyc ward and after you are found to be 'normal' there is no recourse?

    I expected a murder but nothing ever happened.

    Pick your shrink with care!


    Terry

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by wn4isx View Post
    Depends on the state laws.
    In some states some shrinks can commit ANYONE if, in said shrinks professional opinion, that ANYONE is a threat to themselves or others.
    Case Law may have changed, but in either 1996 or 97 we video taped an psyc evaluation and the MD decided, on camara, that the patient needed a long rest in Happy Acres.
    When she got out, six months later, she sued everyone involved.
    We, video crew, got served and after being deposed, were dismissed from the case.
    As might be imagined we followed the case quite closely and were amazed when the trial court dismissed the suit citing professional privilege.

    6 months in a phsyc ward and after you are found to be 'normal' there is no recourse?

    I expected a murder but nothing ever happened.

    Pick your shrink with care!


    Terry

    It seems the court is on her side.

  6. #6
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    Most states required a periodic court review and new term of commitment.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by wn4isx View Post
    Depends on the state laws.
    In some states some shrinks can commit ANYONE if, in said shrinks professional opinion, that ANYONE is a threat to themselves or others.
    Case Law may have changed, but in either 1996 or 97 we video taped an psyc evaluation and the MD decided, on camara, that the patient needed a long rest in Happy Acres.
    When she got out, six months later, she sued everyone involved.
    We, video crew, got served and after being deposed, were dismissed from the case.
    As might be imagined we followed the case quite closely and were amazed when the trial court dismissed the suit citing professional privilege.

    6 months in a phsyc ward and after you are found to be 'normal' there is no recourse?

    I expected a murder but nothing ever happened.

    Pick your shrink with care!


    Terry
    Wasn't it in Soviet Russia that if you contested the system in any way, you were judged insane (Gosh you must be to rock a perfect boat!) and committed to "retraining?"

    Gulags were a favorite for psychology training.

    I imagine the psychologists there had professional privilege as well.

    Dobbin
    I hinnire propter hoc ecce ego

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Dobbin View Post
    Wasn't it in Soviet Russia that if you contested the system in any way, you were judged insane (Gosh you must be to rock a perfect boat!) and committed to "retraining?"

    Gulags were a favorite for psychology training.

    I imagine the psychologists there had professional privilege as well.

    Dobbin
    I wasn't trying to defend the shrink, far from it, I was sort of appalled that anyone could have 'you' locked up without a trial.
    My French is rusty (rusted) but I had thought that Letter De Catche (letter of committal by any noble or aristocrat) was ancient history.

    Terry

  9. #9
    It has always amazed me that involuntary hospitalizations or treatments of any sort result in the patient being billed and or held liable for the expenses. If any agency of the government or any private physician thinks a person should be hospitalized, yet they don't want to go, then the government or the physician should be liable for the damned bill! In a lot of cases it's nothing but a thinly-disguised racket. It's not too far removed from those cities that have a contract with a towing company and the cops basically force accident victims to get their car towed "right now" rather than allow them to push it to the side of the road or get a friend to come and move it. Happens every day and there's always supposedly some good excuse like "public safety" or "concern for the patient." Conveniently, there invariably seems to be a hefty bill attached to such concern and safety!

    Many years ago I was sideswiped on my bike by a hit and run driver. The collision left me temporarily unconscious in the median. When I came to, I did the basic CNS self-assessment and realized that I was ambulatory and *mostly* OK. Eventually the cops showed up and insisted that I allow an ambulance to take me to hospital. Having no insurance and no money to pay the inevitable bills - and going through a very thin financial period - I refused any treatment. I was polite with the police, but they got stroppy and acted like assholes with me in any case. I just asked if they could call someone for me, which they refused to do and then walked off, got in their cruiser and left. I walked, well, hobbled, to my nearby apartment and called friends to help get my bike. I went to see my own doctor the next day.

    Now, some here might argue about the wisdom of me refusing treatment, but the really important point is that as a free citizen I should have the ultimate and absolute right to accept or deny any form of treatment. Many times since I have more or less seen people "forced" into an ambulance and taken away and you just know the money machine is at work behind the scenes.

    Best regards
    Doc

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doc1 View Post
    Now, some here might argue about the wisdom of me refusing treatment, but the really important point is that as a free citizen I should have the ultimate and absolute right to accept or deny any form of treatment. Many times since I have more or less seen people "forced" into an ambulance and taken away and you just know the money machine is at work behind the scenes.

    Best regards
    Doc
    You are correct in that not everyone in an accident needs a ride to the hospital in an accident. But I will say that back in my EMT days there was more than one accident victim that seriously needed a ride to the hospital and they refused. They had to sign a waiver stating that they understood that by denying medical treatment/ride to the hospital in an ambulance they were on their own. This varies by state. Back in the 80's in Illinois you still had a choice, don't know if that law has changed or not since then.

    K-

  11. #11
    A BIT OFF TOPIC:

    VERY TRAGIC FOR THIS WOMAN I HOPE SHE IS ABLE TO FULLY RECOVER FROM ALL THE TRAUMA.............

    BUT.............I HAVE A GOOD FRIEND WHO CANNOT PERSUADE ANYONE TO COMMIT HER ADULT DAUGHTER FOR MENTAL TREATMENT.......THIS YOUNG WOMAN HAS THREATENED TO KILL MY FRIEND MULTIPLE TIMES, BEEN VIOLENT IN BEHAVIOR, ADMITTED DRUG USAGE, AND HAS BEEN INCARCERATED A FEW TIMES FOR A LITTLE WHILE.........

    THIS YOUNG WOMAN IS VERY UNSTABLE..........BUT NO "OFFICIAL" WILL KEEP HER AGAINST HER WILL...........BOTH SIDES OF A DARK COIN.................
    Sapphire

    myopically challenged

  12. #12
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    No one has yet made the "psychic connection" with o-care. Remember the juvenile judge in PA who was sending kids to detention centers and getting kickbacks from those privately-run facilities? What about if doctors start force-admitting people to hospitals and then bill them, as "additional funding sources" as they lose billions caring for older, sicker people under the ACA...?


    Get it now?

  13. #13
    After looking up and reading the relevant Vermont state law on involuntary commitment, I notice that Vermont has fewer safeguards protecting the patient's rights than many, or even most, other states. There is the standard that two separate physicians must both sign an affidavit that they consider that the patient is in need of an involuntary hold as they are a danger to themselves or others. That's pretty standard everywhere since the Baker Act.

    In order to hold a patient longer than 72 hours (which is the national limit due to the Baker Act), there must be notification to the court, and to "an interested party" which seemingly can be a close relative, friend or even a person's regular doctor. In most states, there must be OVERWHELMING documentation that the person is dangerous (themselves/others) to obtain a hold which is depending upon the state is for a time not to exceed from one week to 30 days. Most states have laws which require the institution to file a request to continue involuntary commitment each an every time they wish to hold the patient longer than the period of time (varies by state from one week to 30 days). This request for continued commitment MUST be signed off on by more than one physician, and also by a judge.

    Vermont seems to have the 72 hour thing, but falls down on the longer term commitment oversight. If the patient does not file a request for release from the court where the original 72 hour hold and the longer term commitment papers were filed, then there seems to be a bit of leeway as to the time someone can be held without the court demanding "Hey! Your 30 days are up, let the patient out or submit more documentation!" I don't see anywhere in their statute a time limit or even a time table for submission of supporting documentation of a continued need for involuntary commitment. Maybe I just missed it, but I find it very concerning for reasons of civil liberties.

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