A 26-year-old quadriplegic sued by Northridge Hospital Medical Center for trespassing because he refused to be transferred has been moved, eliminating the need for the hospital's legal action to evict him, a hospital lawyer said Tuesday.
The hospital had sued Shervin Firouzi, whose spinal cord was severed in a 1986 diving accident, to evict him to free one of four beds available for patients needing acute rehabilitation treatment.
Although Firouzi needs 24-hour supervision to ensure that his respirator continues working, he does not need emergency care. He was admitted to the Northridge hospital in November, 1986, for six weeks of rehabilitation. But he stayed until last week, when he was transferred to Temple Hospital near downtown Los Angeles, a facility for respirator-dependent quadriplegics who do not require emergency care.
A Los Angeles Superior Court judge in July urged Firouzi's attorney and the hospital's attorneys to reach a settlement.
Firouzi reluctantly accepted a transfer although he would have preferred to go to a Chatsworth nursing home that specializes in treating conscious, mobile quadriplegics, said Marilyn Holle, Firouzi's attorney. William W. Feuer, an attorney for the hospital, said the transfer ends the hospital's litigation against Firouzi.
Northridge Hospital is helping to train the staff at Temple Hospital to take care of Firouzi's special needs, Holle said. Nevertheless, she said, Temple is an inappropriate place for Firouzi because he is one of only two patients there who are conscious and able to move around. He operates a motorized wheelchair with a chin device.
Holle said her client still hopes eventually to live with his sister in Canoga Park.
Holle said the 16 hours of daily nursing care Firouzi would need living with his sister would be less costly for the state's Medi-Cal program, which is paying for Firouzi's care at Temple. Holle said his sister would care for him the other eight hours of the day.
State Medi-Cal officials contend that it would be more costly, not less, to provide Firouzi with in-home nursing.
Holle is suing the state in Sacramento Superior Court to win home nursing care for Firouzi and a number of other patients in similar situations.