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Northern District Decision: Threat of Institutionalization Sufficient for ADA Claims


In a lawsuit challenging the reduction of Medicaid funded in-home private duty skilled nursing services, a district court held on September 27, 2011 that Plaintiffs alleging that they could be forced into nursing facilities could add claims under Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act, regardless of the fact that they are not presently institutionalized.

All of the plaintiffs are children and are in the same situation whereby Georgia’s Department of Community Health (which administers Georgia’s Medicaid program) proposes to continuously reduce the number of in-home private duty nursing hours each plaintiff receives. The Georgia Advocacy Office represents all 5 plaintiffs in this case.

In allowing the ADA claim to go forward, the court quoted another case saying that Title II of the ADA “would be meaningless if plaintiffs were required to segregate themselves by entering an institution before they could challenge an allegedly discriminatory law or policy that threatens to force them into segregated isolation.”

Hunter ex rel. Lynah v. Cook, No. 1:08-CV-2930-TWT, 2011 WL 4500009 (N.D. Ga. Sept. 27, 2011)

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