Case Worth $127 Million Against Cumberland Hospital Constitutes 20 Plaintiffs

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Kevin Biniazan, Esq. - Virginia Abuse Guardian

Hi - I’m Kevin. I am an attorney that is licensed to practice law in Virginia. My team and I currently represent nearly two dozen plaintiffs alleging sexual abuse at Cumberland Hospital. If you are considering a legal claim, I am looking forward to helping you find justice and guide you through your legal options.

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Cumberland Hospital Filing Alleges Child Sexual Abuse, Negligence, And More

In October of 2020, a momentous legal claim was presented against Cumberland Hospital, otherwise known as the Cumberland Hospital for Children and Adolescents, in New Kent County, VA. The complaint was brought forth by 20 individual plaintiffs seeking total compensation of $127 million, including punitive damages.

Claims Against Cumberland Hospital

Severe allegations are made not only against the Cumberland Children’s Hospital for Children and Adolescents but also against Universal Health Services (UHS), the center's owner. Among these are claims of fraud, negligence, sexual assault, battery, and more. 

Many complaints stem from the opinion that the center was understaffed. This allowed some residents, who ranged in ages from 2-22, to access the rooms of other patients and sexually abuse them. Staff members are also reported to have physically abused patients, with one incident involving hot water standing out amongst all. 

Additionally, comments have been made regarding Cumberland Hospital's efforts to keep patients for longer than prescribed by their treatment plans. This had the goal of running up the already significant medical bills of patients in order to pad the business' bottom line.

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Medical Director Dr. Daniel Davidow

Most accounts of abuse seem to be attributed to Dr. David, the former medical director of the facility. Most alarmingly, it is claimed that he regularly subjected young females to "femoral pulse checks," an unnecessary diagnostic test that he'd perform so as to sexually assault unsuspecting patients. Of 20 victim accounts represented in the filing, 12 of them mentioned non-consensual touching.

Psychotherapist Herschel “Mickey” Harden

As of this writing, only the former psychotherapist at Cumberland, Herschel Harden, has been criminally charged. He currently faces two felony counts of object sexual penetration after an incident involving a female patient who visited with him at the Hospital. Another allegation against Harden was made by an 11-year-old boy who said the psychotherapist battered him.

On Davidow's behavior, Harden stated that he had heard rumors regarding the ongoing abuse but that internal investigations had uncovered no wrongdoing or at least no action was taken against Davidow.

Future Complaints Against Cumberland Hospital

It is unclear at this time if additional legal filings will be made against Cumberland, its owner, or other individual health providers employed there. Unfortunately, the pool of victims appears to be extensive, so it's impossible to say how many claims may arise.

What can be said with confidence, however, is that all victims should feel comfortable coming forward with their stories. Join the survivors who have already stood up for their rights, and make sure that your voice is heard too. It's possible to hold accountable those who permitted such abuses not only to happen but to remain hidden, and the time to do it is now. Let our dedicated legal team help and support you through this.

Past Investigations Of Neglect At Cumberland Hospital

Our team's extensive research, which ranged from 2008 thru 2020, revealed that Cumberland Hospital had been cited several times by The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and had been the subject of an investigation by a myriad of entities including the media.

Below are some incidents where CMS cited Cumberland:

  • 9/16/2011: Cited for failing to ensure adequate nursing staff at the Cumberland center
  • 9/16/2011: Cited for a disregarded ‘Time Toileting’ plan resulting in boy experiencing 144 incidents of bladder & bowel incontinence
  • 10/27/2011: Cited for not having physician orders to restrain residents in 32 restraint/seclusion incidents
  • 10/18/2012: Citation of pharmacy for use of expired medications
  • 10/18/2012: Cited for deficiencies in providing wound care


Cumberland Hospital Abuse Claims: Pending Investigations

At the moment, Cumberland Hospital is undergoing several investigations. Some of these investigations may be pending and this list may not include all investigations:

  • Investigation by Laffey Bucci Kent and Breit Cantor – our attorneys representing certain families who allege their children were abuse at Cumberland
  • Investigation by Virginia Department of Health
  • Investigation by Virginia State Police - this investigation has been ongoing since 2017
  • CBS 6 Investigation - originally started in 2019
  • Investigations related to the pending criminal case of “Mickey” Harden by the Virginia Attorney General’s office. - these incidents of abuse alleged to have occurred in 2018 and 2019

We will update this list as we learn more information.

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