Rep. Greg Walden and Families Push for Treatment Center Accountability

Congressman Greg Walden says this happens across the country. NewsWatch12's Sionan Barrett shows us how a new bill could hold these facilities accountable.

Posted: May 14, 2018 5:50 PM

MEDFORD, Ore.- Sober living houses are a place where families put their trust and sometimes thousands of dollars in to help their loved ones.

Congressman Greg Walden says some of those facilities are exploiting those families, and his committee unanimously approved 25 bills near the end of April.

Mike Pelfrey says it's a revolving door in some of these facilities. Mike and Winnie Pelfrey went to an addiction treatment facility to get their son help.

Pelfrey says, "They were looking for a check to be written for that day and we were desperate and we wrote the check that day."

30 days later, they wanted to see if the treatment was working. Mike was told his son was doing "wonderful". But once their second check cleared, he was kicked out just 4 days later.

Pelfrey says, "They messed with the wrong person here because unfortunately this is something that I'm very passionate about"

Today Congressman Walden introduced a bill that would crack down on what he calls "patient brokers" or facilities that profit of families treating addiction.

Representative Walden says, "People have been tried and convicted for appalling practices like these, but we can do more to insure bad actors are held accountable and patients are set up to stay clean."

Representative Walden says there are instances of fraud and abuse in the treatment industry. This bill will create new standards for treatment facilities and money to fund the changes.

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