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April 22, 2016

L.A. Hospital to Pay $450,000 for Alleged Patient Dumping

A nonprofit medical center in Los Angeles has agreed to pay $450,000 to settle allegations that it dumped a homeless man on the streets after treating him, the Los Angeles Times reports. Good Samaritan Hospital will also institute strict discharge protocols for homeless patients, City Attorney Mike Feuer said in announcing the agreement Thursday.

The accusations arise from a December 2014 case in which, according to city officials, the 408-bed hospital west of downtown treated the man for a foot injury, then released him with only a bus token. Good Samaritan, which has won praise in the past for working closely with a homeless-services group in caring for indigent patients, denied the allegations but said it opted to settle “rather than expend its limited resources on protracted litigation.”

The Good Samaritan payment will fund recuperative care for homeless patients. Mr. Feuer’s office has been cracking down on suspected patient dumping by city hospitals and has thus far collected $2 million in fees, fines, and other payments from four institutions.