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Drug Rehabilitation Centers and Vehicular Negligence — What You Should Know

When a loved one suffers from addiction, life can be difficult, even when choosing to start their journey towards recovery. 

Now more than ever, substance abuse is at an all-time high, and drug rehab facilities are popping up throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Unfortunately, the growth of these facilities has outpaced the laws that regulate them. Because of that, many facilities have employed workers who are not properly trained to do their jobs. They may even go so far as hiring past patients as employees who not only lack the skills they need to do their jobs, but these same people are often picking up addicts all over the Tri-state area leading to car accidents in company vehicles.

Although drug rehab centers aren’t nearly as well regulated as hospitals and other care facilities, that doesn’t mean that they don’t have a duty to patients and their families. When a facility falls short of meeting their standard of care, they are liable for medical negligence lawsuits.

Here are some of the duties that drug rehab centers are expected to meet:

Duty to Provide Qualified Staff

Every rehab facility is expected to have qualified staff. At a baseline, this means what you would expect: they have trained doctors, nurses, technicians, orderlies, and other personnel that have the training and certifications necessary to perform their duties.

However, it’s more than just the necessary certifications that make medical personnel at a rehab facility “qualified.” Any patient who goes into rehab is beginning a long, arduous journey and often requires patients to put themselves in vulnerable positions. For that reason, they deserve staff who are likely to use excessive force against them, steal from them, or have a long history of crime that increases the chance that patients will become victims.

Duty to Provide a Safe Environment

Duty to Monitor Patients and Employees

Individuals who are trying to get sober often face unique psychological stressors. At rehab centers, sometimes prior patients become employees at the centers. We understand that this may benefit the individual and the center because they have a hands-on understanding of addiction. However, there are also a lot of unknowns. Prior patients who become employees can create dangers to the public at large in some cases. One such case is when the rehab center directs and allows prior patients and current employees to use company vehicles to travel to pick up other patients for treatment. This benefits the rehab facility because they do not need to hire an outside driver, and they gain income when they get a new patient. In some cases, obtaining new patients becomes the goal, and this can cause employees to not be properly trained or monitored themselves. To find out more about the standard of care rehab facilities need to follow and to understand what the rules of the road are, schedule an appointment with a car accident or negligence attorney serving Pennsylvania and New Jersey from the Law Offices of Vincent J. Ciecka, P.C. today!