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New Jersey hospital deports unconscious stroke victim

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A US hospital deported an unconscious stroke victim after noticing that the patient was an undocumented immigrant from Poland. Polish health officials are furious that the man was “dumped on their doorstep” before the transfer was approved.

“Imagine being carted around like a sack of potatoes,” Polish Consul General Ewa Junczyk-Ziomecka told New York Daily News, describing the incident in which 69-year old Wladyslaw Haniszewski was unconsciously deported to his homeland.

Haniszewski, who suffers from a blood disease, lived in Perth Amboy, N.J., for 30 years. He recently lost his job, apartment, and health insurance, and was forced to move into a homeless shelter, the Daily News reports.

After the man suffered a dangerous stroke, a friend named Jerzy Jedra took him to the New Jersey hospital for treatment. When officials at the Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital noticed that the patient had no health insurance and lived in the US without documentation, they sent the comatose man to Poland. US hospitals are legally required to provide emergency care to anyone who needs it, but are allowed to deport stabilized undocumented immigrants.

But in order to deport someone, a US hospital must first get consent from either the patient, a family member, or a court guardian. Officials at the Polish consulate claim that no one was contacted, and that Haniszewski’s family was never informed that the man was deported.

Meanwhile, Haniszewski was left at the doorstep of a hospital in Boleslawiec, Poland. The facility is now being forced to take care of the man’s medical payments, which have cost “a few hundred dollars” a day, the hospital’s deputy director told TVN.


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