• Petitioned Office of Quality Monitoring

This petition was delivered to:

The Joint Commission
Office of Quality Monitoring
Vice President and CNE, Loyola University Medical Center
Paula Hindle
Office for Civil Rights
Office for Civil Rights
Chief Special Litigation Section- Civil Rights Division- Department of Justice
Jonathan M. Smith

Loyola University Medical Center: Give Alex Spourdalakis the medical treatment he needs!

    1. Joanna McGowan
    2. Petition by

      Joanna McGowan

      Wallingford, PA

March 2013


From Joanna McGowan: Just wanted to let everyone know that Alex has been released from Loyola and is going to a new medical facility where he will receive appropriate medical treatment. Thanks everyone for caring about Alex and sharing his story!

On February 16th, Dorothy Spourdalakis took her 14 year old son Alex - who suffers from autism and is nonverbal - to Gottlieb Hospital for severe gastrointestinal distress. There, Alex was placed in locked restraints to all four limbs. He remained restrained for there for 13 days while he suffered bouts of severe vomiting and diarrhea, naked save only a hospital sheet to cover him. On February 28th, Alex was transferred to to Loyola University Medical Center because they could provide the services that the hospital determined he needed - pediatric gastroenterology, neurology and anesthesiology. However, when the gastroenterologist saw Alex on March 5th he did not see the need to perform a physical exam. On March 12th, Dorothy had a care plan meeting at the hospital. She was told that the staff is “unable” to determine if Alex is having pain, and only psychiatric treatment has been ordered. Dorothy was told that if she does not agree fully to the terms, Alex would be removed and placed in the care of DCFS. Alex has now been in the hospital for almost a month (20+ days of which were spent in restraints). None of the many standardized assessment tools for nonverbal patients have been utilized .His pain has not yet been assessed or treated. He has not been medicated for pain. He is being denied medical care and accommodations for his disability of autism. TELL LOYOLA UNIVERSITY MEDICAL CENTER TO DO THE STANDARD GASTROINTESTINAL TESTING THAT WOULD BE DONE IF ALEX DID NOT HAVE AUTISM!!!!

Office of Quality Monitoring, The Joint Commission
Paula Hindle, Vice President and CNE, Loyola University Medical Center
Office for Civil Rights, Office for Civil Rights
Jonathan M. Smith, Chief Special Litigation Section- Civil Rights Division- Department of Justice
Give Alex Spourdalakis the medical treatment he needs!
I urge you to reconsider your decision to provide Alex with only psychiatric care. He is in pain! Please order the proper gastrointestinal testing this boy needs. Please consider patients with autism to be deserving of the same care that any typical child would receive.

[Your name]

Recent signatures


    1. Reached 500 signatures
    2. Please help spread the word!

      Joanna McGowan
      Petition Organizer

      Thank you for caring and supporting Alex! Please use the Social Media Tools above to help spread the word! .

    3. Reached 100 signatures
    4. Reached 50 signatures
    5. Reached 25 signatures
    6. Woman Claims Hospital Restrained Autistic Son

      Joanna McGowan
      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.

    7. Reached 5 signatures


    Reasons for signing

      • over 1 year ago

      As some one who has worked with children for many years in the UK, I find this appaling. Part of my work with children has involved working for a charity which provides a safe play environment for children with all disabilities- A job thatI loved and found extremely rewarding! However, having become frustrated with teaching non-disabled children in the UK, I have now relocated to teach children in Africa, where I feel I am making better use of my skills as a qualified primary school teacher. Children should be treated with care and respect, whatever their needs or abilities. I sincerely hope this poor boy receives the treatment he deserves- He and his family must be going through hell.

    • Clayton Bigham ROSEVILLE, CA
      • over 1 year ago

      I have an autistic child.

    • Sunita Chavhan DEDHAM, MA
      • over 1 year ago


    • Pam Parma PECONIC, NY
      • over 1 year ago

      Work with children who have autism.

    • Merilee Maeir SHARON, MA
      • over 1 year ago

      Autistic patients have the same rights as neurotypical patients to medical care. What happened is discrimination.


    Develop your own tools to win.

    Use the Change.org API to develop your own organizing tools. Find out how to get started.