RIGHT TO APPEAL

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FYI: Alleging that the state Department of Health is violating federal law by not accepting appeals from residents of nursing homes who are discharged or transferred to another facility against their will, the New York Legal Assistance Group filed a class action lawsuit in federal district court in Manhattan yesterday. The suit says that under federal Department of Health and Human Services regulations, every nursing home resident can request a hearing to challenge a facility’s reasons for kicking that resident out, but that New York State health officials have created no such process. For example, the suit tells of a 67-year-old man recovering from a kidney transplant who was suddenly transferred from a Bronx nursing home for allegedly striking a nurse, a charge he denies. [4/11/03]