HOLLISTER, Calif. —
A drug and alcohol rehabilitation center in Hollister is caught in a wrongful death lawsuit, two years after directing a patient to isolate in a hotel room for testing positive for COVID-19.
In 2021, Andrew McConnell, 49, checked into Bright Future Recovery for a drug and alcohol detox program after being turned away by a rehab center in Fresno, according to the lawsuit filed in a California Superior Court on Aug. 11.
“Him and his family were told that,” Camron Dowlatshahi, the plaintiff’s lawyer, said. “Upon entry into my time, they were initially going to go there to that facility and they were turned back and said, ‘Well, we have a cash patient coming in from Georgia.”
Four days later, the lawsuit says McConnell tested positive for COVID-19, and Bright Future directed his brother to isolate him in a hotel room, and that he would receive treatment via Zoom.
Dowlatshahi states he does not know what happened when McConnell left the rehab center and was turned over to his brother, but maintains he was not properly discharged.
The next morning, McConnell was found dead, foaming at the nose and mouth, according to the lawsuit.
“They deal with patients like this on a daily basis. They have a lot of experience in this field. They should know that there is a danger, there’s a potential for fatality — obviously in this case — if you don’t monitor a patient adequately,” Dowlatshahi said.