Loyola Medical Center, Maywood, Chicago, Illinois: Provide Appropriate Medical Testing and Medical Treatment for Alex Spourdalakis.
  • Petitioned Loyola Medical Center, Maywood, Chicago, Illinois

This petition was delivered to:

Loyola Medical Center, Maywood, Chicago, Illinois
Paula Hindle, Vice President and CNE, Loyola University Medical Center
The Joint Commission
Office for Civil Rights Office of Quality Monitoring

Loyola Medical Center, Maywood, Chicago, Illinois: Provide Appropriate Medical Testing and Medical Treatment for Alex Spourdalakis.

    1. Andrea Clarke
    2. Petition by

      Andrea Clarke

      Norfolk, VA

  1.  
  2.   
March 2013

Victory

From Petition Creator: The people's voices were heard and Alex is now safe and on his way to receive proper medical treatment.

On behalf of Dorothy Spourdalakis, Alex's mother and according to first hand eye witnesses and Dorothy Spourdalakis, Alex's mother:

We are reaching out on a Global Level to ensure the health and well being of all individuals without delays or prejudice due to any disability or other protected category.

According to first hand eye witnesses and Dorothy Spourdalakis, Alex's mother:

Alex Spourdalakis, is a 14 year old nonverbal autistic child that as of March 15, 2013 is an inpatient at Loyola Medical Center in room 2243 in Chicago Illinois. He has severe autism and had been kept there, on an adult floor, since his transfer from Gottlieb Hospital on 2/28/2013.

Alex remained in locked restraints to all four of his limbs for in excess of 20 consecutive days, including the days he previously spent at Gottlieb held in an ER bay for approximately 14 of those days, unable to be admitted into a room.

Alex's basic human needs were not met.

Alex did not have any accommodations for his disability.
Alex did not have anyone attempt to provide him the ability to communicate.
Alex has not been held in the least restrictive environment and the frequent assessments for his need to be restrained, as required by regulatory agencies and hospital policy, were not performed.
Not one professional that specializes in autism had examined him.
Alex was kept in locked restraints without any written plan to work towards release. Alex was denied medical care and intervention by this facility that he was specifically transferred there to receive.
Alex's mother had been denied a list of physicians in charge of his care.
His mother had been denied a list of medications that are ordered for her child.
His mother did not have access to a phone inside the patient room in order for her to access resources.
He had not received any medical services other that psychiatric medications, restraint and seclusion since he arrived.
He had a delay in treatment waiting 5 days for an ordered consultative physician to see him and one additional day until he was examined by a specialist for his gastrointestinal problems, the very reason he was transferred to this facility.
He had been held in restraints while the physicians had ordered and then cancelled this procedure.
He was not being provided appropriate foods as he has many food allergies.
He did not have access to any specialized evaluations or services from any professionals such as occupational health, speech therapy, developmental pediatrician or behavioral specialist who might have been able to address his disability.
He was being denied medical care and accommodations for his disability of autism and his mother was purposefully being separated from him and threatened by hospital staff.
His pain had not been assessed or treated.
None of the many standardized assessment tools for nonverbal patients had been utilized and his mother was told that staff is “unable” to determine if he is having pain.
He has not been medicated for pain.

What we are asking Loyola Medical Center, Maywood, Chicago, Illinois to do:
Provide Alex Spourdalakis with Immediate Medical Testing and Medical Treatment without further delay.

Allow one of the many Autism Doctors who specialize in Gastrointestinal Disorders of Autistic Individuals that has been presented to you and your staff take the lead on his medical treatment plan and care.

Provide his mother Dorothy Spourdalakis a list of medications that are ordered for her child.

Provide a phone inside Alex's room in order for her to access additional resources to ensure the safety, health and well-being of her child.

Remove all restraints and orders for such.

Move him to the pediactric wing of the hospital.

Consult with Dorothy Spourdalakis and a Autism Medical Specialist to ensure Alex's dietary needs are met to ensure his food allergies and intolerance's are not aggravating any underlying gastrointestinal or other medical conditions that may also cause adverse behaviors.

Provide and allow Alex and his mother Dorothy access to specialized evaluations and services from any professionals such as occupational health, speech & language therapy, developmental pediatrician, Autism Medical Doctor and positive behavioral specialist who have the background and education in working with children with autism.

Put safeguards in place to ensure Dorothy, Alex's mother has full access to her son and his care without harassment by hospital staff.

Demand all hospital workers who enter Alex's room, are a part of either directly or indirectly, his care, be educated in working with and communicating with children with special needs. Demand they wear their name badges in full view.

According to eye witnesses and Dorothy Spourdalakis, Alex's mother; The following patient rights, as outlined by JCAHO, have been violated:
You have the right to be informed about the care you will receive.
You have the right to get important information about your care in your preferred language.
You have the right to get information in a manner that meets your needs, if you have vision, speech or hearing, or mental impairments.
You have the right to make decisions about your care.
You have the right to refuse care.
You have the right to know the names of the caregivers who treat you.
You have the right to safe care.
You have a right to have your pain addressed You have the right to care that is free from discrimination because of physical or mental disability.
You have the right to get a list of all your current medications.
You have the right to be listened to.
You have the right to be treated with courtesy and respect.

************

On February 16th, 2013, Dorothy Spourdalakis had to take her non-verbal child to the ER at Gottlieb Hospital in Melrose Park, IL. At that time, 14 year old Alex was inconsolable, highly-distressed and suffering bouts of violent vomiting, severe constipation and diarrhea. According to Dorothy, Alex has a diagnosis of severe autism and cognitive impairment.

For 12 days, Gottlieb's staff kept Alex in 4 point physical restraints within the ER, never admitting him formally into the hospital and finally transferred him to Loyola. The transfer to Loyola University Medical Center in Maywood, IL was based on their ability to better assist with pediatric gastroenterology, neurology and anesthesiology. Up until a few days ago, Alex was still in physical restraints but now has a security guard posted at the entrance of his hospital room, located on an adult floor versus a pediatric floor.

The mother, Dorothy and multiple advocates have spoken with Loyola staff regarding a care plan for Alex. The doctors at Loyola, along with hospital administrators, continue to ignore the requests for diagnostic testing and only offer psychiatric medications but unfortunately Alex is still very much in pain. Please help us support Alex and Dorothy so they may receive the respect and medical care they so desperately deserve.

Day 19: http://www.ageofautism.com/2013/03/day-19-loyola-chicago-hospital-locks-down-autistic-patient.html
Day 21: http://www.ageofautism.com/2013/03/alex-spourdalakis-loyola-medical-center-ineptitude.html
Day 22: http://www.ageofautism.com/2013/03/day-22-autism-agony-at-loyola-u-medical-center-.html — at Loyola University Medical Center-Loyola University Health System.

 

 

Recent signatures

    News

    1. Saturday, yesterday, Alex and his mom left Loyola hospital in Chicago!

      Andrea Clarke
      Petition Organizer

      Update: Alex Spourdalakis

      Update memo

      Saturday, yesterday, Alex and his mom, Dorothy, left Loyola hospital in Chicago, heading to an undisclosed location out of state where he will receive appropriate medical attention. Age of Autism Contributing Editor Lisa Goes offers this update from Dorothy Spourdalakis:

      To all the people who cared enough to get involved:

      Alex and I would like to thank everyone for their prayers, good thoughts and cards with beautiful drawings and best wishes. I would especially like to thank the one person who became my son Alex's silent benefactor. She is truly my son's "angel".

      It is during times like this we as a family realize our full potential. We know no one will help us unless we help ourselves. The continued abuse, medical neglect, discrimination and ignorance have to stop. Vaccines have maimed too many already and there are many more to come. The CDC's latest stats confirm that. We are not going away, nor are we giving up. My son Alex is just one

    2. Reached 3,000 signatures
    3. 30 Days and No Medical Help....Please help Save Alex!

      Andrea Clarke
      Petition Organizer

      http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-942306 - if you have not done so, please leave your support for CNN to pick up and report of Alex’s plight.

      Thank you for helping us keep this going….Alex is now in his 30th day at the hospital.

      ********
      30 Days.

      720 Hours.

      43,200 Minutes.

      2,592,000 Seconds.

      Tomorrow.

      No scope. No transfer. No treatment. Gag order. No one can talk. No one reporting on it. Local media silenced.

      Do not let this story die. When given the opportunity to engage, remain CALM and explain THAT AUTISM IS MEDICAL. AUTISM.....IS....MEDICAL. And Dorothy, as friends have said...is our ROSA PARKS.

      Remain calm. Explain to the MEDIA, and everyone you know. Autism is medical, this child is in pain and we HAVE A DUTY TO CHANGE THE FACE OF MEDICAL TREATMENT FOR VOICELESS CHILDREN. It is our duty...and OUR RIGHT as citizens of this COUNTRY.

      KEEP GOING.

      xo THE REV

      Help Alex Spourdalakis! He Needs Appropriate Medical Testing and Treatment

      We are asking that you do an investigative story into Alex's case and assist Alex in getting the appropriate medical care he needs. Please help him and those who are worried about him daily and praying someone will care enough to assist. This story is what is transpiring in health care today.

    4. Reached 2,500 signatures
    5. Day 27 - Please Do Everything You Can To Help Alex.

      Andrea Clarke
      Petition Organizer

      Day 27 - Please Help Alex. We keep thinking what we would do if we were being held in a medical facility for 27 days, in pain, forcibly restrained and medicated, being kept from an appropriate diet and medical care.

      We cannot imagine what it is like for Alex Spourdalakis who is fourteen, very ill, unable to speak, living with autism, and now traumatized by this treatment he is currently being subjected to by Loyola Medical Center. His mother Dorothy is unable to sleep or properly care for herself fearing that if she leaves her son’s side, something terrible will transpire.

      Twenty seven days now. Why?

      This ireport was created to share this story globally and also request that CNN investigative and cover this case. Please click on the green button below the story to advise CNN this story needs to be covered:
      http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-942306

      Please leave your support for CNN to report on Alex's story, get your friends and family to do the same AND Sign this petition.

      Help Alex Spourdalakis! He Needs Appropriate Medical Testing and Treatment

      We are asking that you do an investigative story into Alex's case and assist Alex in getting the appropriate medical care he needs. Please help him and those who are worried about him daily and praying someone will care enough to assist. This story is what is transpiring in health care today.

    6. Reached 2,000 signatures
    7. If we do not stand now for Alex and Dorothy NO ONE WILL STAND BESIDE US

      Andrea Clarke
      Petition Organizer

      "Please read this thoughtful article by Dan Olmsted to understand WHY this is happening. If we do not stand now for Alex and Dorothy NO ONE WILL STAND BESIDE US when our children reach puberty." - Lisa Joyce Goes

      http://www.ageofautism.com/2013/03/weekly-wrap-alex-and-his-mom-autism-and-suicide-and-psychiatrys-hysteria-hangover.html

      Weekly Wrap: Alex and His Mom, Autism and Suicide, and Psychiatry's Hysteria Hangover - AGE OF AUTISM

      By Dan Olmsted The drama now playing out at Loyola hospital in Chicago, as detailed in Contributing Editor Lisa Goes' superb reporting for Age of Autism, is a stark case in point of what so many autism families face -- and so many more will -- as this epidemic unfolds.

    8. This is no longer an autism issue...IT IS A HUMAN RIGHTS ISSUE!

      Andrea Clarke
      Petition Organizer

      Please help us!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! PLEASE FORCE MAINSTREAM MEDIA TO ACT ON THIS! This is no longer an autism issue...IT IS A HUMAN RIGHTS ISSUE! http://www.ageofautism.com/2013/03/weekly-wrap-alex-and-his-mom-autism-and-suicide-and-psychiatrys-hysteria-hangover.html

    9. Just over 3000 supporters to go! We can do this!

      Andrea Clarke
      Petition Organizer

      Thanks to all of you for your heart felt support of Alex!

      As of this morning he has over 1500 signatures from caring people all over the world.

      Please help us reach the 5000 signature goal this weekend by sharing his Petition on Facebook, Send a Tweet, and contact friends and family and co-workers through email providing them the link.

      http://www.change.org/petitions/loyola-medical-center-maywood-chicago-illinois-provide-appropriate-medical-testing-and-medical-treatment-for-alex-spourdalakis

      With Immense Gratitude, The "A" Team

    10. Reached 1,500 signatures
    11. Yes, Autism is also Medical–The Story You Need to Read of Alex Spourdalakis

      Andrea Clarke
      Petition Organizer
      Yes, Autism is also Medical - The Story You Need to Read of Alex Spourdalakis

      I helped Lil D get ready for school this morning, as I always do. Wake up, go to the bathroom, strip sheets that have been dirtied by yet another accident, brush teeth, change clothes, downstairs for breakfast. Put lunch in his backpack, and when the time comes, put the harness on and escort him to the bus.

    12. Reached 1,000 signatures
    13. Global Support for Alex!

      Andrea Clarke
      Petition Organizer

      So far Alex has received moral support through this Change.org petition from folks within the USA, Canada, Greece, Austria, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Netherlands, Argentina, Puerto Rico, Mexico and India so far!! Global Support for you Alex!!! Thanks everyone, please continue to help Alex by taking this around the World.

    14. Reached 750 signatures
    15. Continued Ineptitude at Loyola University Medical Center

      Andrea Clarke
      Petition Organizer
      The Case of Alex Spourdalakis: Continued Ineptitude at Loyola University Medical Center - AGE OF AUTISM

      On Sunday morning, Jeanna Reed of AIM (Autism is Medical) and I visited Dorothy and Alex Spourdalakis, who are now on their 21st day in the Loyola Healthcare System. (From left, Jenna, Godmother Agatha, Alex, Lisa). The restraints have been removed and replaced with a nameless security guard dressed in scrubs and a charge nurse by the name of "Debbie" who wore no identification.

    16. Age of Autism - Alex Spourdalakis Case of Hospital Ineptitude

      Andrea Clarke
      Petition Organizer
      'Thinking Mom' tells Loyola Univ. Medical Center that autism is not "a mystery"

      Jeannie Stokowski-Bisanti is multilingual, has lived on three continents and travels extensively worldwide. She was educated in the U.S. and in the Philippines. A former model, flight attendant, and substitute teacher turned stay-at-home mother of three. She is an active member of a charity...

    17. Thinking Mom tells Loyola Univ. Med Center autism is not "a mystery"

      Andrea Clarke
      Petition Organizer
      'Thinking Mom' tells Loyola Univ. Medical Center that autism is not "a mystery"

      Jeannie Stokowski-Bisanti is multilingual, has lived on three continents and travels extensively worldwide. She was educated in the U.S. and in the Philippines. A former model, flight attendant, and substitute teacher turned stay-at-home mother of three. She is an active member of a charity...

    18. Additional Call To Action To Help Alex and His Mother Dorothy!

      Andrea Clarke
      Petition Organizer

      Alex needs more help! Please call these folks and tell them Alex’s rights under CRIPA have been violated. Please e-mail to document your request.
      http://www.justice.gov/crt/about/spl/disability.php
      Jonathan M. Smith Chief Special Litigation Section- Civil Rights Division- Department of Justice
      (202) 514-6255 (877) 218-5228 FAX - (202) 514-0212
      Alt. FAX - (202) 514-6273
      Email - Special.Litigation@usdoj.gov

      Then contact these folks. They oversee all of the Protection and Advocacy agencies in the country. Ask them if they can help Alex Spourdalakis and his mother Dorothy.
      National Disability Rights Network
      900 Second Street, NE, Suite 211
      Washington, DC 20002
      P: 202-408-9514, F: 202-408-9520

      Then call each and every autism or disability advocacy agency that you have made contributions to, are a member, or have connections with and ask them to assist Alex. Every single one.

      http://www.examiner.com/article/thinking-mom-tells-loyola-univ-medical-center-that-autism-is-not-a-mystery

    19. Reached 500 signatures
    20. Please Share With All You Know!

      Andrea Clarke
      Petition Organizer

      Thank you so much for your support of Alex and all special folks! Please help us out by using the Social Media Tools above to Share with your Facebook Friends, Send a Tweet and Send to you Email Contacts.

    21. Reached 200 signatures
    22. Philly News Station Coverage

      Andrea Clarke
      Petition Organizer
      Woman claims hospital restrained autistic son, left him to suffer

      Woman claims hospital restrained autistic son, left him to suffer Posted: Friday, March 8, 2013 9:49 PM EST Updated: Friday, March 8, 2013 10:15 PM EST CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) - FIRST ON FOX: Claims of neglect and mistreatment by one mother Friday night who says a local hospital restrained her son and left him to suffer, all because he is special needs.

    23. Fox New Station Report

      Andrea Clarke
      Petition Organizer
      Woman claims hospital restrained autistic son, left him to suffer

      Woman claims hospital restrained autistic son, left him to suffer Posted: Friday, March 8, 2013 9:49 PM EST Updated: Friday, March 8, 2013 10:15 PM EST CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) - FIRST ON FOX: Claims of neglect and mistreatment by one mother Friday night who says a local hospital restrained her son and left him to suffer, all because he is special needs.

    24. Reached 25 signatures
    25. Day 19: Age of Autism Article -Chicago Hospital Locks Down Autistic Patient

      Andrea Clarke
      Petition Organizer
      Day 19: Chicago Hospital Locks Down Autistic Patient - AGE OF AUTISM

      UPDATE 3/9: Fox Chicago ran a story on this situation and Philly picked up this story, read and watch video here. Managing Editor's Note: Loyola Medicine in Chicago, IL has as its tagline, " We also treat the human spirit." But they forgot the ending, "..like a dog."

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Sue Collins PORT ELIZABETH, SOUTH AFRICA
      • over 1 year ago

      Because it's important to make a stand for those who don't have a voice or cannot be heard.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • jacqui schmidt PORT ELIZABETH, SOUTH AFRICA
      • over 1 year ago

      My daughter is autistic with cognitive impairments...

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Andrew Marais PORT ELIZABETH, SOUTH AFRICA
      • over 1 year ago

      Alex is a human being,with recognized disorder requiring specialist attention from caring providers. He is not a criminal requiring incarceration.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Brittany Ammons FITZGERALD, GA
      • over 1 year ago

      I have a younger brother with autism who is nonverbal as well.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Nicole Lenz DANE, WI
      • over 1 year ago

      Because no one deserves to be treated this way! Because Alex is a beautiful soul and my heart breaks reading this story! Because I am a mom and even though my son is not autistic I would hope someone out there would stand with me if he was being mistreated this way! Because this is just WRONG!

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

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