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Woman claims rehab center rejected insurance, left elderly father outside in rain for hours

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WSOC/CNN) – A woman in North Carolina says a rehabilitation center left her elderly father, who has trouble walking and talking, out in the rain for hours.

Willie Williams, 78, had been at Charlotte Health and Rehabilitation Center for a month, but on Thursday, his daughter Maxine Rozzelle got a call saying there was an issue with his insurance, and he had to leave.

“She had told me that there would be someone to pick him up in 25 minutes,” Rozzelle said. “I say, ‘I cannot get there in 25 minutes’, so I said ‘you have to give me more time than that’. So she was like, ‘I’ll see what I can do.’”

Rozzelle says the facility then got a transportation service to bring him home. When she arrived to his house hours later, she found her father outside in the rain with no way to get inside.

“He was upset. He was screaming,” Rozzelle said.

Rozzelle says her father did not have shoes or socks on. Luckily, a neighbor came over to give him a jacket and a blanket.

Rozzelle tried to call the facility and the transportation service, but has not gotten a response.

WSOC spoke with the driver for the transportation company.

He said he waited with the man for his family for over an hour. He said the man asked to be let out of the car when a neighbor came to get him.

The rehab facility said the following in a statement in part:

When an insurance company denies further nursing facility benefits and transportation home needs to be arranged, we contact the transportation company authorized by the insurer and arrange a safe transport. We ensure that patients are safe, stable and all needs provided for when they leave our facility.”

 –Charlotte Health and Rehabilitation Center

Rozzelle says her father was neither stable nor safe. The transportation company that moved Williams did not respond to request for comment.

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