NEW ORLEANS – A deaf Jefferson Parish woman alleges she was not provided an interpreter while receiving medical treatment.

Kimberly Esparza filed a complaint on May 9 in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana against University Medical Center Management Corp., Louisiana Children's Medical Center, board of supervisors of Louisiana State University and Agricultural and Mechanical College citing the Americans with Disabilities Act.

According to the complaint, the plaintiff is deaf and communicates primarily using American Sign Language. The suit states she received treatment at the University Medical Center in 2016 for a broken arm and received dental treatment in January at UMCNO. She alleges she suffered damages for having difficulty understanding her medical conditions and/or the treatment she received because she was not provided an interpreter. 

The plaintiff holds University Medical Center Management Corp., Louisiana Children's Medical Center, board of supervisors of Louisiana State University and Agricultural and Mechanical College responsible because the defendants allegedly failed and refused to provide auxiliary aids and services necessary to ensure effective communication.

The plaintiff requests a trial by jury and seeks an order for defendants to create and maintain sign language interpreters and ensure availability of the same, compensatory damages, costs and attorneys’ fees and all other relief that the court finds necessary. She is represented by Andrew D. Bizer, Garret S. DeReus and Marc P. Florman of Bizer & DeReus in New Orleans.

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana Case number 2:17-cv-04803

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