A new study finds 29% of Massachusetts nursing homes refused to take patients with a history of drug use who needed post-hospital care in 2018.
The researchers told WBUR they were surprised that skilled nursing and rehab centers included comments such as “do not take people who use drugs” and “do not accept methadone patients” in their explanations of why they rejected patient referrals.
“Typically with discrimination, people are not quite so open,” said lead author Dr. Simeon Kimmel of Boston Medical Center’s Grayken Center for Addiction. “So it really was surprising to us that we found so much open discrimination.”
Federal prosecutors reached a settlement in May 2018 with a Massachusetts rehabilitation center that would not admit a patient taking the opioid use disorder treatment Suboxone. The settlement said the patient’s right to admission and care was protected under the Americans with Disabilities Act.