Psych Ward Holds Woman Against Her Will, Bills Her
Christina Schumacher fighting to get out of hospital
By Evann Gastaldo, Newser Staff
Posted Jan 23, 2014 1:06 PM CST
Stock image   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – The day after Christina Schumacher's estranged husband killed the couple's 14-year-old son and then himself on Dec. 18, Schumacher was detained by police and admitted, against her will, to a hospital psychiatric ward. She's still there—and Fletcher Allen Health Care is billing her for the stay. Schumacher went to a previously-scheduled appointment with her psychiatrist on Dec. 19; her doctor had police on standby, and they took her into custody because she refused to admit herself to the hospital. But, she insists to the Burlington Free Press, "I am not ill; I am simply a mother who is grieving the tragic loss of her young son."

A judge heard arguments regarding Schumacher's release yesterday (the issue: whether she's a danger to herself or others; she and her friends say she is not) and will issue a decision soon, the Free Press adds. Schumacher also has a teen daughter. As for the bill, a state representative is on Schumacher's side: "People are billed as if they are there voluntarily. It’s a bill you didn’t ask for and you didn’t want," says Anne Donahue. It's not clear what will happen; a hospital rep says Medicaid sometimes picks up the cost in cases like this.

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Showing 3 of 49 comments
Jan 26, 2014 1:30 AM CST
The key that I wonder about is that she was admitted while in the custody of the Police. So like wrongful conviction, some public agency should be swinging in the wind for the bill at this point.
Jan 25, 2014 7:17 PM CST
We do not make criminals pay for their keep, but the innocent must pay for theirs. Sounds like the new America to me.
Darryn James
Jan 25, 2014 12:30 PM CST
thats a great racket, lock someone away in loony bin against their will, then make them pay for it, thats just too funny.