WASHINGTON –The Justice Department today reached a settlement agreement with Selma Medical Associates Inc. (Selma Medical), a privately owned medical facility located in Winchester, Virginia, that provides primary and specialty care to patients.
The settlement agreement resolves a complaint under Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) that Selma Medical refused to accept a prospective new patient for an appointment because he takes Suboxone, a medication used to treat opioid use disorder. The Justice Department’s investigation concluded that Selma Medical regularly turned away prospective new patients who lawfully take controlled substances to treat their medical conditions.
Under the agreement, Selma Medical will not deny services on the basis of disability, including opioid use disorder, or apply standards or criteria that screen out individuals with disabilities. The agreement also requires Selma Medical to adopt non-discrimination policies, train staff on its non-discrimination obligations, and report on compliance. Selma Medical will also pay $30,000 in damages to the complainant and a $10,000 civil penalty to the United States.
“This agreement ensures that people in recovery from an opioid use disorder do not face discriminatory barriers to health care services,” said Assistant Attorney General Eric Dreiband of the Civil Rights Division. “Unlawfully denying services to individuals with disabilities because of their medical conditions subjects these individuals to unwarranted stigma and harm, and will not be tolerated by the Department of Justice.”
People interested in finding out more about the ADA or this settlement agreement can call the toll-free ADA Information Line at 800-514-0301 or 800-514-0383 (TDD), or access the ADA website at http://www.ada.gov.