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Health System Settles Deaf Communication Complaint

DETROIT (AP) – The Justice Department says Henry Ford Health System has agreed to pay $70,000 as part of a settlement over a complaint that it failed to provide sign language interpreters in 2004 to a psychiatric patient and his family members.

The agreement announced Wednesday aims to ensure effective communication with deaf or hard of hearing people. According to the complaint, the health system violated the Americans with Disabilities Act at a facility in the Detroit suburb of Ferndale.

The health system said in a statement that it will be implementing new procedures and conduct training for staff.

The complaint says the patient was denied effective communication with hospital staff, the opportunity to effectively participate in medical treatment decisions and the full benefit of health care services provided at the facility.

© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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