Immigration status should not affect the quality of care that patients receive from a hospital. And all patients, regardless of their immigration status, have a right to confidentiality when seeking medical treatment.
On October 13, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agents near Haulover Beach pulled over a car and took one of the passengers into custody. After experiencing a medical event, that passenger was taken by ambulance to Aventura Hospital and Medical Center’s Emergency Room. CBP officers, armed and sporting full body armor, followed the ambulance and remained inside the Emergency Room for nearly five hours. During this time, the officer freely entered the patient’s exam room, remaining there while the patient spoke with medical professionals, in apparent violation of the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), The hospital staff took no steps to prevent the CBP officer from entering the patient’s room.
We demand that the Board of Trustees of Aventura Hospital and Medical Center establish policies that protects the rights and best interests of all of their patients, including those that are undocumented, and ensure that all members of the hospital staff are trained to interact with immigration authorities in a way that protects patients’ rights.
In a moment when our government is increasing surveillance, raids, and detention of immigrants, hospitals must prepare and empower their staff to protect undocumented patients immediately.
Letter Signers (list being updated):
Rabbi Jaime Aklepi, Temple Beth Am, Pinecrest
Rabbi Ethan Bair, Temple Beth Sholom, Miami Beach
Rabbi Jonathan Berkun, Aventura Turnberry Jewish Center, Aventura
Rabbi Bradd Boxman, Congregation Kol Tikvah, Parkland
Rabbi Robyn Fisher, Beth Or, Miami
Cantor Mark Goldman, Past President of the American Conference of Cantors, Fort Lauderdale
Rabbi Rachel Greengrass, Temple Beth Am, Pinecrest
Rabbi Marc Labowitz, Temple Adath Or, Davie
Rabbi Jonathan Tabachnikoff, Congregation Dor Chadash, Miami
Rabbi Cheryl Weiner, Hollywood
Are you a Jewish Clergymember who would like to publicly sign our open letter? Email us at: BTASouthFL@gmail.com