Longan resident Costanza Genoese Zerbi said his mother, Savina Genoese Zerbi, 84, was taken from the Regency Palms medical center to the University Medical Center's emergency room on Jan. 12 after making suicidal comments.
Hours after Zerbi arrived at the ER, her daughter said, the hospital put her in a taxi back to Regency Palms, where she arrived around 2:15 in the morning on January 13.
Security video shows the elderly woman wearing a bathrobe and sandals and carrying a large envelope. She tries to open the front door without success, then hits her several times before pulling away.
Another security video shows her walking back and forth in a dark alley before returning to the door. Her daughter said she was eventually admitted to the assisted care unit at around 3am. It is unclear who let her into the hospital.
Daughter will meet hospital staff
Costanza Zerbi said he filed a complaint with the California Department of Public Health against College Medical Center for sending his mother back to the call center in a taxi.
Savina Zerbi declined an offer to help with the transport and asked to be taken home, the hospital said, according to the affiliate. She added that a relative and care unit were informed that she was being discharged.
Costanza Zerbi said that her mother was especially vulnerable because she had just started living in the assisted care unit and was having difficulty adapting to her new life.
The reason for the complaint against the hospital is not to sue but to raise awareness and ensure that the hospital improves the way it deals with patients like its mother, she said.
"I just want to see the hospital operate more responsibly," she said.
CNN called the Regency Palms, the College Medical Center and the California Department of Public Health, but did not hear anything.
The Faculty Medical Center has defended its actions, saying it is in compliance with regulations on patient discharge, but will discuss concerns with Zerbi's family, KCAL said.
The daughter plans to meet with hospital officials on 11 February. She said her mother stays at Regency Palms.
Alzheimer's disease is the most common form of dementia, a general term for memory loss and intellectual abilities. It is a slow disease that begins with loss of memory and ends with severe brain damage.