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Thread: Pawlenty: Let ER's turn away patients to cut costs

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    Re: Pawlenty: Let ER's turn away patients to cut costs

    Quote Originally Posted by danarhea View Post
    True that, but there would be a gap in between hospitals ceasing to treat non emergencies and the market filling the void. What do we do in the meantime?
    The hospitals themselves would likely fill the void if they knew they could turn patients away from the ER and charge a sliding fee.

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    Re: Pawlenty: Let ER's turn away patients to cut costs

    Quote Originally Posted by CrusaderRabbit08 View Post
    Why wasn't that done before ER's were forced into this?
    I will have to check, but I don't think they are forced to take non-emergencies. I think they are just filling a need.

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    Re: Pawlenty: Let ER's turn away patients to cut costs

    Quote Originally Posted by Boo Radley View Post
    I will have to check, but I don't think they are forced to take non-emergencies. I think they are just filling a need.
    They aren't; but in order to determine that, they'll waste time and money examining the patient.

    Also, an earache isn't an emergency; but do you sending a screaming 2-yo old home without treatment telling mom to see her doctor in the morning?

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    Re: Pawlenty: Let ER's turn away patients to cut costs

    Quote Originally Posted by CrusaderRabbit08 View Post
    They aren't; but in order to determine that, they'll waste time and money examining the patient.

    Also, an earache isn't an emergency; but do you sending a screaming 2-yo old home without treatment telling mom to see her doctor in the morning?
    That's true. However, many hospitals have opened other screening avenues. And once the determination has been made, can begin discussions about cost, removing the patient from the ER, and making other judgments.

    But as noted before, these conditions have existed long before federal legislation to cover emergency treatment and to this day. I don't understand why anyone would think the market would all of the sudden address it.

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    Re: Pawlenty: Let ER's turn away patients to cut costs

    Quote Originally Posted by Boo Radley View Post
    That's true. However, many hospitals have opened other screening avenues. And once the determination has been made, can begin discussions about cost, removing the patient from the ER, and making other judgments.

    But as noted before, these conditions have existed long before federal legislation to cover emergency treatment and to this day. I don't understand why anyone would think the market would all of the sudden address it.
    My hospital has after hours clinics. They stay open until about 1am or 2am.

    I don't see the market addressing it either.

    However it's handled, an after hours program is needed. EMTALA is an unfunded mandate and an unfair burden that's being forced upon on our healthcare system.

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    Re: Pawlenty: Let ER's turn away patients to cut costs

    Quote Originally Posted by CrusaderRabbit08 View Post
    My hospital has after hours clinics. They stay open until about 1am or 2am.

    I don't see the market addressing it either.

    However it's handled, an after hours program is needed. EMTALA is an unfunded mandate and an unfair burden that's being forced upon on our healthcare system.
    True. But there would be serious objection to paying for it. And the situation prior wasn't acceptable. We're really not willing to turn people away and let them die. So, something had to be written into law. True, it led to others using the ER, as the market had not addressed this, but the core problem was the turning away of people in need who couldn't pay.

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    Re: Pawlenty: Let ER's turn away patients to cut costs

    Quote Originally Posted by danarhea View Post
    These are all very perplexing questions, and I would like to hear some thought out answers from everybody on this issue. So, in regard to what I have posted, the discussion in this thread should be as follows:

    Our health care system - Where do we go from here?
    Back when I was seriously considering med school in college, to prep for it and beef up my application, I volunteered in a hospital. Did a day a week on the telemetry ward and two days a week in the ER. What I noticed about the ER is that many, many people use it as a doctor's office and that's not what it's for. I would see elderly people who would use it as an escape from their day, drug addicts who used it as a place to crash out, homeless who would fake illness to get in out of the elements, and a whole host of other abuses of the ER.

    I have no problem with triage nurses turning people away from the ER for these kinds of abuses. I also think there should be a specific list of guidelines indicating what symptoms cannot be turned away.

    Another thing I noticed is that the ER also jacks prices up on everything. The same sutures that you pay $20.00 for in the medical offices upstairs will cost $60.00 from the ER. That's just not acceptable to gouge the price in a time of actual emergency. Costs could be kept down for everyone if the hospital paid premium for the staffs' time in the ER but didn't jack up materials costs on top of it.

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    Re: Pawlenty: Let ER's turn away patients to cut costs

    Everything gets paid for one way or another. If we have no system of controls that includes how to pay for it, then we will have some ad hock measures that will do it for us.

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    Re: Pawlenty: Let ER's turn away patients to cut costs

    Lets expand the federal program for low income people. to include emrgency services. the program now has medical facilities that support low income people , you pay a precentage of your income for medical tests and office visits. medicines you buy yourself, but the program exists. if it was expanded we could have the private system eased somewhat.If we wanted to we c ould have Health care professionals work in it to pay back government loans. etc. school loans.

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    Re: Pawlenty: Let ER's turn away patients to cut costs

    Quote Originally Posted by b.larset View Post
    Lets expand the federal program for low income people. to include emrgency services. the program now has medical facilities that support low income people , you pay a precentage of your income for medical tests and office visits. medicines you buy yourself, but the program exists. if it was expanded we could have the private system eased somewhat.If we wanted to we c ould have Health care professionals work in it to pay back government loans. etc. school loans.
    I certainly see possibilities there, but you would again be faced with tax dollars paying for health care. Am I wrong to expect some objection to this?

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