A Woman’s Unusual Journey to Leave a Hospital

Hospitals don’t generally sue patients for trespassing, but that is what happened to Alexis Ratcliff. Alexis is 18 years old and has lived in a hospital in Winston-Salem, North Carolina since she was 13. Last year, the hospital sued Alexis for trespassing to try and force her to move out. Alexis wants to leave the hospital, too, just not where the hospital wanted her to go. Alexis wants to live in her own home with support from caregivers. She wants to live close to family and friends. The hospital, Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist, wanted to transfer Alexis to a nursing home in another state. Alexis, who won a full academic scholarship to a nearby college and started classes there this fall, is saying no.

On today’s episode of Disability Rap, we speak with Alexis Ratcliff. Alexis is a quadriplegic who uses a wheelchair to get around and a ventilator to help her breathe. She acquired her disability as a result of a car accident when she was 18 months old. We are also joined by Lisa Nesbitt. Lisa is a Supervising Attorney at Disability Rights North Carolina, and she’s part of the team working on Alexis’s case.

Click here to listen to and read the transcript of the show.