PATIENT, A PHYSICIAN, TRIES TO ADVOCATE FOR HIS HOSPITAL ROOMMATE AND IS RESTRAINED TO HIS BED UNDER THE BAKER ACT!
Patient Leaves Hospital Against Medical Advice and Recovers Quickly at Home
Dr. Stephen Guffanti was an Emergency Room doctor for 50 years but when he came down with Covid, he found himself as a mistreated patient in Sarasota Memorial Hospital in Florida. They immediately put him in Covid isolation. They started him on Remdesivir, oxygen and a steroid. He knew he needed an antibiotic but was denied it because it was not the hospital protocol for Covid.
During his stay, they gave him a roommate, a marathon runner that also had Covid. His roommate was also isolated from any family and/or an advocate. Dr. Guffanti could tell he was not doing well and saw his chart showing that his white blood cell count was going up rapidly. He asked his roommate if it was okay if he advocated for him since he was a doctor and knew what he needed to recover. His roommate of course said yes. When Dr. Guffanti told the nurse that he needed to speak to a doctor because his roommate needed to be cultured and given antibiotics for his bacterial pneumonia. Never once did a doctor come in or was an antibiotic started on his roommate. At that point, Dr. Guffanti realized he needed to get out of that hospital because they were not trying to help patients but just the opposite. He finally told the nurse that his roommate desperately needed some antibiotics, that he was dying. The nurse got incredibly angry and had the police and other doctors and nurses tie Dr. Guffanti to his bed, under the Baker Act. He told the hospital he wanted out immediately and they let him leave with an oxygen saturation of 81%.
Dr. Guffanti treated himself when he got out with oxygen and antibiotics and he recovered quickly. He filed a police report for theft, illegally holding him against his will and elderly assault. The police did not think those crimes were important. At least Dr. Guffanti survived, his roommate was not as lucky. Had they just listened to this experienced caring doctor, but the money was too important to them.
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