Karina Hansen was forcibly removed from her home to undergo experimental treatment
This is her story.
On Feb 12th 2013, 5 policemen from Holstebro county, Denmark, came to Karina’s house and forcibly removed her from her bed. There were also 2 doctors, a locksmith and 2 social workers present.
Karina was then driven to a hospital in an ambulance. Her parents were not told where Karina was being taken or what reason they had for taking her. No paperwork was given to her parents. Later that day, they got a phone call and were told that Karina was at Hammel Neurocenter, and that someone would call them every day at 10 a.m. to tell them how Karina was doing. They were also told that no one could visit Karina for 14 days.
A few days later, Karina’s parents got a letter from a psychiatrist, Nils Balle Christensen, which said he would be in charge of Karina’s treatment at Hammel Neurocenter. He also wrote that because “of her condition”, Karina was not allowed visitors for 14 days. That ban on visitors was later extended to three weeks because Nils Balle Christensen was on vacation.
Karina’s parents and lawyer have still not received any official paperwork from any government body or doctor about the reason for Karina’s removal. They have not received a treatment plan or copies of Karina’s journals, except for a few blood test results. No official charges have been made against her parents. This case has never been heard by a court. Karina’s parents do not know when/if they will be allowed to see her or when/if Karina will be allowed to come home. Karina’s parents and her lawyer have power of attorney for Karina, but this is being ignored. The regional state administrations for Mid-Jutland (Statsforvaltningen Midtjylland) have appointed someone from their office as a guardian for Karina.
The only information the family receives about Karina comes from a head doctor from Hammel Neurocenter, Jens Gyring. He now calls Karina’s father twice a week and tells him how Karina is. But the parents have a hard time trusting what is being said because they get conflicting information. Nils Balle Christensen says Karina is improving every day, but Jens Gyring says there is no change. Her sister thinks Karina is worse. Jens Gyring says he is taking all of his orders about Karina’s care from Nils Balle Christensen and that the treatment given is a rehabilitation program.
Why are the parents and the lawyer not allowed to see the whole paperwork from the case apart from some bloodtests?
Why are the parents not allowed to visit? Are there any charges made against the parents? Karina’s mother was paid by the county to take care of Karina and there was never any report of neglect. After Karina was taken, her mother was fired from her job on the grounds that the job was no longer needed.
Jens Gyring gave a verbal message to the family that this could continue for a long time, perhaps a year. We have not seen any evidence that Karina is getting better.
The psychiatrist, Nils Balle Christensen, writes that Karina is an adult and has the ability to make ”here and now decisions” and that Hammel Neurocenter is doing nothing against her will. But at the same time, Holstebro Kommune believes that Karina needs a guardian and Statsforfatningen Midtjylland have appointed one for her. This disempowers Karina completely and leaves all decisions up to her guardian.
At Hammel, Karina’s parents introduced themselves to the staff and asked for permission to see their daughter. The answer was No and they were told that they should have made an appointment with the doctor before coming. Rebecca Hansen, chairman of the danish ME Association asked if there was a ban on visits and they answered no, not a ban. Then she asked if there were restrictions, but did not receive an answear. Instead, a staff member said that she would call Jens Gyring, the head doctor at the center. They were asked to wait. The staff at Hammel Neurocenter were polite and friendly, but it was obvious that they were not comfortable with the family being there. Rebecca Hansen pointed out that it was not legal to prevent parents from seeing their child and tried to show them the statement from the Ministry of Health and Prevention. A second staff member broke in to say that this discussion must be taken up with the doctors and not them.
In the meantime, we can think about what this situation means for other ME patients and their families in Denmark. A severely-ill ME patient is assigned a psychiatrist that has never treated a severely-ill ME patient before. The psychiatrist comes from a clinic that has chosen not to work with international ME experts. (letter from Sept. 2012 and minutes from the meeting in Oct. 2012) The psychiatrist does not wish to work with the patient’s lawyer or give any written information about the treatment he will give. When the ME patient and the family decide they do not want the treatment offered by this psychiatrist, then the Danish authorities work together to remove the patient from her home - quite obviously against her will - and isolate her from her family and her lawyer.
Do they not have the right to have visitors when they are in the hospital?
Studies have shown that Graded Exercise Therapy makes the vast majority of mildly-affected Myalgic Encephalomyelitis-patients worse.
The doctors who have ordered this treatment are psychiatrists Nils Balle Christensen and Per Fink from The Research Clinic for Functional Disorders and Psychosomatics. It is completely unacceptable that Danish authorities are allowing the psychiatrists to treat Karina in this way.
At home Karina was allowed to decide her own treatment, but Nils Balle Christensen and Per Fink do not allow her to choose her treatment.
Karina refuses to take any supplements or medicine of any kind at the hospital.
Karina has been diagnosed with ME 4 times: twice by ME specialists once by a rheumatology hospital and once by a psychiatrist
Remember, there is NO evidence that Karina is or ever was mentally ill, as she was always declared mentally healthy.
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