7 ON YOUR SIDE

7 On Your Side: Gerald Williams receives new leg braces

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A man says he was given orthopedic devices that were supposed to help him walk. Instead, they left him bruised and in pain, but when he asked they be replaced, there was an issue.

Gerald Williams needs braces on his legs to walk.

“I have what you’d call drop foot in both legs. I have no strength in either leg. I can neither stand on my toe or heel,” he says.

For years Williams says he’s been going to the Nascott Orthotics and Prosthetic office at MedStar in Northwest Washington. In March he was given braces that he says didn't fit.

“They were unbearable because of the pain.”

Williams showed ABC7 the remnants of bruises on his leg and on his foot that he says were caused by the braces.

“I called every day. I never heard from him.”

So he went back for his follow-up date. He showed ABC7 the appointment card.

“They told me I had no follow-up date, I didn’t have an appointment.”

His doctor wrote a letter asking for the devices to be fixed or replaced, but Williams says Nascott refused to replace them, despite a warranty promising to make any repairs.

MedStar won’t comment on the particulars, but sent him a notice, barring him from the building for “being verbally abusive and threatening.”

“All I did was speak to him. I didn’t raise my voice, I didn’t disrespect in anyway, just let him know he wasn’t treating me fair," Williams says.

After 7 On Your Side called, MedStar released the following statement:

“Because of patient privacy guidelines, MedStar Health cannot comment on aspects of Mr. Williams’ treatment. The complaint you cite stems from his dissatisfaction with a professional clinical recommendation we made. MedStar Health has a “patient first” philosophy that puts the patient’s best interests above all else and engages patients as partners in their care. When we realized we could no longer work effectively with Mr. Williams, we suggested he seek care elsewhere. We will provide him with his prescription, and he will not incur the cost of the orthotic device that was dispensed on March 25.”

A month after calling 7 On Your Side, and with the help of a new practitioner, Williams has the braces he wanted and is back at full speed.

“I’m free of pain. With these braces I don’t feel the pain,” he says.

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