Press Conference April 12, 2006 at 10:00: Kaiser Hospital Not Equipped for Disabled Patients. Hospital In Violation Of Court Order to Comply With ADA.

Apr 11, 2006, 01:00 ET from The Law Firm of Gwilliam, Ivary, Chiosso, Cavalli & Brewer

    OAKLAND, Calif., April 11 /PRNewswire/ -- The following is being issued
     In January 2003, John Mannick, a man with multiple sclerosis who
 requires a wheelchair for mobility, was admitted to Kaiser's Oakland
 facility for one week's hospitalization. Immediately, he realized the
 hospital was not equipped to handle his needs as a disabled wheelchair
 user. Kaiser did not have even one patient room in its entire facility that
 was accessible for the disabled. The most basic accommodations were lacking
 -- no accessible toilet or shower. During his stay, John was put in danger
 while Kaiser staff attempted to shower him on a slippery bench in an
 inaccessible shower in the maternity ward; was humiliated and embarrassed
 when his sister had to pour pitchers of water over him to shower him while
 staff and visitors peered on; and was outraged that one of the best known
 hospitals did not have proper accommodations for its disabled patients.
     Following his stay, John met with representatives of Kaiser Oakland. He
 was promised that Kaiser would change its facility to provide access for
 its disabled patients. After Kaiser broke its promise to add one accessible
 patient room by the end of 2003, Paul Rein, a well known disability rights
 lawyer, filed a lawsuit against Kaiser on behalf of Mr. Mannick. As Mr.
 Rein explains:
     "It's outrageous that, 15 years after the passage of the ADA, Kaiser
 still has no accessible patient rooms or shower facilities, and has denied
 all legal responsibility for its inaccessible conditions."
     In September 2005, Kaiser agreed to the entry of a consent decree and
 court order, which required that it provide substantial access for the
 disabled, including improved disabled parking and three accessible patient
 rooms with accessible toilets and showers. The first of the accessible
 patient rooms, along with the disabled accessible parking, were ordered by
 the Federal Court to be completed by the end of 2005, but Kaiser has still
 not complied.
     Recently, Gary Gwilliam, a distinguished trial attorney, joined the
 team of Paul Rein and Patricia Barbosa for the trial against Kaiser on
 claims of physical and psychological damages, and treble damages. Mr.
 Gwilliam stated that:
     "John's outrage is felt by all of us; the fact that such a reputable
 hospital does not have even one single accessible toilet room for its
 disabled patients is despicable. What Kaiser is saying, not only to John
 but to all disabled patients, is that 'we don't have any responsibility to
     A jury trial is scheduled in the Northern California Federal District
 Court for August 7, 2006 in the case.
     Attorneys Paul Rein and Gary Gwilliam will be present with John Mannick
 at the Press Conference.
     Press conference to be held on April 12, 2006 at 10:00 a.m. at the law
 firm of Gwilliam, Ivary, Chiosso, Cavalli & Brewer, 1999 Harrison Street,
 Suite 1600, Oakland, California 94612. For further information contact J.
 Gary Gwilliam at 510-832-5411. The Court Order, Complaint, and other
 supporting documents will be available at the press conference.

SOURCE The Law Firm of Gwilliam, Ivary, Chiosso, Cavalli & Brewer