Autistic man is ‘a prisoner’ in Ottawa hospital

copyright CBC

copyright CBC

Ottawa, Canada – A heart wrenching news report by CBC News on March 11 has sparked fears for the welfare of 31 year old Nicholas Spagnuolo, an autistic man from Ontario who is confined to his hospital room, surrounded by security guards all day every day.

The report which voices the fears of his parents Anne and Joseph, who claim that Nicholas isn’t resident at Ottawa Hospital’s Civic Campus acute care unit because of his health care needs, but because there are no rooms in specialist facilities to accommodate him.

Nicholas was born with Cerebral Palsy and has autism and dementia and lived at home with his parents until they were no longer able to cope with his bursts of violence.

His parents claim that they have searched extensively for other options for Nicholas.

Mrs Spagnuolo told CBC:

“He’s been on a waiting list [for long-term care] for this past year, while we’ve been realizing this system is saturated and there’s nowhere else for Nicholas to be. This is just crazy. We didn’t expect this to happen.”

They feel Nicholas has been neglected by staff at the hospital because they are not trained to deal with anything apart from his basic health care needs.

The full article can be found here and the CBC report can be viewed below.