Listen to the Victims: Senate Holds Hearing on Guardianship By Marian Kornicki

Listen to the Victims Senate Holds Hearing on Guardianship By Marion Kornicki

On March 30, 2023, the Senate Special Committee on Aging held a hearing, “Guardianship and its Alternatives: Protection and Empowerment.” Importantly, this hearing featured one victim witness, Dr. Tina Paone, who spoke about her family’s traumatic, unresolved guardianship nightmare. Her testimony resonated for the many victims that listened to her, as we know too well that guardianship cases are never resolved when there is an estate with money. As she said, “On paper, the current system appears well-intentioned. That’s not how it plays out. On behalf of my family, and so many others, I beg you to please implement meaningful reform.” At this same hearing, Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) proposed a bill titled the Guardianship Bill of Rights Act, which would create a national council charged with promoting less restrictive arrangements for people living under, or being considered for, court-ordered guardianship—thereby leading to fewer guardianships. As I described in “Guardianship Destroyed My Family,” published last year on Mad in America, I have seen in my own life the damage and exploitation that can be wreaked by court-appointed guardians. In an effort to advocate and enact change, I belong to Victims and Families Harmed by Guardianship, a national human rights coalition that functions as a consortium of state coalitions on the quest for reform. This is critical work. Most victims cannot report the exploitation they are experiencing because they are silenced by gag orders, chemical restraint, or threats of retaliation. So, it is up to us—those of us who can speak out—to use our voices for those who cannot. Hopefully, we will be heard. Some background: Britney Spears is not alone For many people, the considerable harms of guardianship only came to the fore with the story of Britney Spears, whose… Read More


“Kaiser Permanente Dr. Syed Maksudul Hossain, Please Don’t Let my Friend Die”

Los Angeles California Kaiser Permanente physician Doctor Doctor Syed Maksudul Hossain

By Janet Phelan No, this cry is not coming from Auschwitz, where Dr. Mengele regularly killed people whose “lives were not worth living.” Dr. Syed Hossain is ostensibly not a dedicated murderer, although after reading this article you may have your doubts. But like Dr. Mengele, Dr. Hossain is functioning in a system which increasingly disregards the sanctity of human life and often grants immunity to medical professionals for depraved acts of negligence. “Scott C.” was sent to a nursing home in Los Angeles following an evaluation at White Memorial Hospital which revealed he had hydrocephalus, a condition that may be caused by a blow to the head and is treatable through surgical intervention. A shunt is placed in the head in order to drain off the fluid. However, the attending doctor at White Memorial, a Dr. Ho, did not suggest any treatment for Scott, who at age 70 was experiencing effects of what is colloquially termed “water on the brain.” The effects include memory loss and gait problems. Without treatment, the prognosis is dim and he can expect increasing memory and gait issues, culminating in death. A Dr. Syed Hossain is listed as Scott’s physician. After being vetted and approved as an authorized person who may receive otherwise private medical information about a patient, I attempted to reach Dr. Hossain. The nursing home administrator kindly provided Dr. Hossain’s cell number. An irritated Dr. Hossain answered my first call, and directed me to call his office, which I did. He did not return the call. I called a second time and was again shuffled off. I also reached out to Mental Health Advocacy, a long-standing law firm in Los Angeles which purportedly serves a disabled population. After going through an… Read More