To Whom It May Concern, I am writing to file a formal complain regarding Bergen Regional Medical Center. On Monday, June 7th, 2010 I arrived at approximately 10:30 by ambulance voluntarily to their ER, not feeling well after a flight into New Jersey from Denver and also a panic attack. It was horrible experience in that ER; the security guards were like they were working for a prison. I was not seen by a doctor in ER until about 3:30 am, he told me they were going to have me talk to a psychiatrist. I spoke with him approximately 5:00 or 5:30am and then again about 7:00am and he was very short and rude with me the last time I spoke with him. He started me on Lithium approximately noon, claiming I was bi-polar after he had only spoke with me for 10 minutes total. At 8:00 am I was moved from the regular ER over to one of the small psych rooms attached to the ER and I was not allowed to exit this area. I was in his room until 4:30pm, at which time they moved me up to whats called Psych Unit A1. I was able to shower and put on my street clothes at this time and relax and watch television. I was a bit unnerved from the start being in there to be honest. The next day is when I met Dr. Mohammad Ramay and my social worker Vicky; I did not know she was my social worker at first, as she never mentioned it. Vicky did mention that I had Cigna and that was going to be a problem for authorization. I spoke with them for maybe 5 minutes, explaining why I had come to the hospital in the first place. Vicky also gave me a form to sign, saying that I was there voluntarily, but that had been changed from me originally going in there, from voluntary to involuntary, it appears and she stated that ER had changed or put me in as involuntary, which was not the case. Dr. Ramay then added a medicine called Geodon, 40mg along with the Lithium, saying I was still manic, he also commented I was probably worked up because of environment, so he also prescribed Clonapin. I took my first Geodon at 5pm on Tuesday and about an hour later, I felt awful, couldnt keep my eyes open and this is hard to explain, felt like someone was twisting or squeezing my brain. I told Dr. Ramay about this the next morning and also refused the 8:00 am dosage, Wednesday, June 9th. I also could not keep my legs still. I mention all of this to Dr. Ramay and he said I HAD to take the Geodon to get better and it doesnt sedate people as I told him it was doing to me. He said about my legs, he would prescribe something called Cogentin, to stop that. I was now on 4 meds and came in there on nothing at all. I told Dr. Ramay the following day, that this was not stopping restless leg and that the Geodon, which he had put up to 80 and then dropped to 60mg, had a bad affect on me and the Cogentin was not working at all. They told me to give it time, that I had just started taking it. I had told Dr Ramay about the Geodon on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, I finally refused to take it. I did not mention this to the doctor or say much more as I felt they would keep me for any reason as it appears that they are just putting people on things they dont need to be on, as well the way the staff treated people. I literally saw nurses screaming and swearing at patients. I was there for a week and this really messed with my head and has caused claustrophobia as I was there for 8 nights and we were not allowed to go outside the whole time I was in there. This can be bad if a person is in there for depression, also made me feel like I was in jail and all I wanted was something for not feeling good. They let me out on the 15th, as they were only authorized by Cigna until then, that is what my Cigna case worker told me on Friday the 11th when I was on the hospital phone with her. When I left the hospital, I could barely speak or sign my name because of the medications, I could hardly speak and sometime had to force words to come out, which in turn came out screaming, my writing when signing my name fizzed out towards the end, my hand could not do it. I felt much worse when I left there, than when I entered. I wasnt speaking much when I was in there and I was writing, so didnt realize it until I was signing my discharged papers, and by this time, I was scared to death to say anything and just wanted to get at of there and back home to Denver. I was only supposed to be there for 3 days for a meeting, but ended up being for 8 days. Also, there was no real therapy, except drug therapy. After the initial meeting with Dr. Ramay, I only saw him for about a minute every week day after that and on the weekend, the resident doctor, who knows me even less than Dr. Ramay if possible. We were allowed to be up as early as 6 am and to be in bed by 11pm, but during the week, they had maybe 3 hours of activities/therapy and on the weekends, one our may, we were told by a nurse Wendy that the rest of the time is to reflect on what we have done. What we have done, I was in there for not feeling well and an upset stomach as well as panicky. So out of fifteen hours during the week, we have 12 hours of free time, but there is one ping pong table, newspaper, and one TV, so in my opinion, this was not a therapeutic environment at all. When I left there I felt like I had drunk 10 cups of coffee and felt like that for a week, until I stopped the lithium and it was out of my system. I have a psychiatrist and a therapist that have both helped me with that and I am still working on the claustrophobia. Vicky also talked to me about a patient, Matthew in there, he was around 52 and I mentioned to her about poor guy, walks around talking to himself, and she says to me, yeah, thats the best he gets, he is schizophrenic. I mentioned that is sad, but that makes me uncomfortable that she may be talking to other patients about me. It appeared to me in my opinion, that I was there and they were milking my insurance as well as others. I apologize for the delay, but it took this long to get my head cleared from this whole experience as the whole thing haunts me. Thank you for your time, .
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