U.S. v. MedStar Health, Inc.
On January 30, 2024, the United States filed a Complaint against MedStar Health, Inc., a leading healthcare provider in Maryland and the greater Washington, D.C., region. The lawsuit, filed under Title III of the ADA, alleges that MedStar Health denied people with disabilities equal access to medical care by excluding their necessary support persons. The suit alleges that MedStar Health failed to modify visitor restrictions so that people with certain disabilities, which affected their ability to independently access medical care, could be accompanied by their support persons (such as a family member, companion, or aide). These included individuals with dementia, intellectual disabilities, or autism spectrum disorder whose disabilities prevented them from providing medical history or understanding medical directions. As a result, they were unable to receive equal care without the assistance of their support person.
On January 30, 2024, the United States simultaneously filed a proposed Consent Decree to resolve the allegations of the Complaint. Under the proposed Consent Decree, MedStar Health has agreed to pay a total of $440,000 to compensate affected individuals. MedStar Health will also revise its policies to ensure ADA compliance, train its workforce on the new policies, and report to the Department on any future exclusion of support persons, as defined in the Decree.