Joni Mitchell could be released from hospital soon, says lawyer

Attorney Alan Watenmaker appeared in court on Monday (May 4) seeking emergency conservator powers to be granted to Mitchell's close friend Leslie Morris

Joni Mitchell may be allowed to leave hospital soon, says the singer’s attorney.

The Canadian singer-songwriter was hospitalised in Los Angeles on March 31, after being found unconscious at her home.

Representatives Mitchell recently denied reports that she is in a coma and unresponsive, but confirmed that she remained hospitalised. Now, her lawyer Alan Watenmaker has told a court on Monday (May 4) that she could be released from hospital shortly.

As the Associated Press report, Watenmaker is seeking emergency conservator powers to be granted to Mitchell’s close friend Leslie Morris upon her release. This would allow Morris to make choices on behalf of Mitchell over medical matters, but not financial.

Early updates stated that Mitchell, 71, was “awake and in good spirits” and getting “stronger each day”. However, US website TMZ later reported that the folk songwriter was in a coma, claiming Mitchell to be “unconscious in a hospital, unable to respond to anyone, with no immediate prospects for getting better”. The website also published legal documents allegedly confirming their claims.

Representatives close to Mitchell refuted the developments. A statement on Mitchell’s official website, and approved by Leslie Morris, read: “Contrary to rumors circulating on the Internet today, Joni is not in a coma. Joni is still in the hospital – but she comprehends, she’s alert, and she has her full senses. A full recovery is expected.”

The message continued: “The document obtained by a certain media outlet simply gives her longtime friend Leslie Morris the authority – in the absence of 24-hour doctor care – to make care decisions for Joni once she leaves the hospital. As we all know, Joni is a strong-willed woman and is nowhere near giving up the fight. Please continue to keep Joni in your thoughts.”

However, Billboard also claimed that “multiple sources” close to Mitchell informed the publication that the singer’s health is “far worse than the public was led to believe”, with one stating that Mitchell’s current condition is “very serious”.

In December 2014, Mitchell told Billboard that she has a rare skin condition called Morgellons Disease, which prevents her from performing live.