The viral video of a recently discharged patient being left outside in the cold wearing only a paper gown sparked an investigation at the Maryland hospital where she received treatment.
Imamu Baraka was walking by a bus stop in downtown Baltimore late Tuesday night when he spotted a group of men in uniforms — likely hospital security guards — drop off a woman and then walk away.
She was wearing only socks and a hospital gown in the chilly January weather, her belongings packed up in a pair of plastic bags left at her feet.
Officials declined to discuss why the woman was being treated at the University of Maryland Medical Center and the details surrounding her discharge. Similar incidents, often referred to as “patient dumping,” typically occur because a patient lacks insurance or financial resources, CBS News reported.
Imamu Barake was walking past the University of Maryland Medical Center in downtown Baltimore when he saw hospital’s security guards wheeling out a patient.
(Imamu Barake via Facebook)
“So y’all just gonna leave this lady out here with no clothes on? That is not okay,” Baraka can be heard saying in his recording of the incident.
“They just left all her stuff out here. This is disgusting that they would just leave her unattended on a bus stop half naked. It’s gotta be a least 40 degrees or colder.”
Baraka later shared the exchange on Facebook and the clip has so far been viewed by more than 3 million people.
Imamu Baraka captured the video of a woman found on the street wearing only a thin hospital gown and socks.
In a follow-up video, he noted he called 911 so that the woman could receive additional care.
The University of Maryland Medical Center CEO Dr. Mohan Suntha apologized to the patient and promised they’d be “holding individuals who made decisions accountable for those decisions,” CNN reported.
Suntha added the incident was a “breakdown of basic human compassion,” and noted the woman’s discharge was not due to her inability to pay or insurance.
The University of Maryland Medical Center in downtown Baltimore.
The hospital in an earlier statement said what happened Tuesday night was “not representative of our patient centered mission.”
“While there are many circumstances of this patient’s case that we cannot address publicly, in the end we clearly failed to fulfill our mission with this patient, no matter the circumstances of her case or the quality of the clinical care we provided in the hospital (which is not depicted in the video,)” it reads.
“We are taking this matter very seriously, conducting a thorough review, and are evaluating the appropriate response, including the possibility of personnel action.”