The Center for Public Representation, Alabama Disabilities Advocacy Program, The Arc, Bazelon Center and Sam Bagenstos filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Civil Rights (OCR) today regarding illegal disability discrimination in treatment rationing protocols being developed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. A similar complaint was filed in Washington state yesterday.
The complaint focuses on the Alabama Department of Public Health’s Emergency Operations Plan regarding ventilator rationing during health emergencies, which states that hospitals are not to provide ventilators to people with certain intellectual and cognitive disabilities, in violation of federal disability rights laws, including the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act (Section 504) and Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Press release about the complaint is here.
You can find more information on the complaint filed in Washington state yesterday and treatment rationing issues during the COVID-19 pandemic here.
For more on the federal response to the COVID-19 crisis and its impact on people with disabilities, visit our webpage.