Tort reform is the key to this whole problem.
"He who does not think himself worth saving from poverty and ignorance by his own efforts, will hardly be thought worth the efforts of anybody else." -- Frederick Douglass, Self-Made Men (1872)
"God is the name by which I designate all things which cross my path violently and recklessly, all things which alter my plans and intentions, and change the course of my life, for better or for worse."
-C G Jung
As a physician and being married to a physician, my wife and I can come up with myriad examples of patients that could have been turned away at the point of entry following immediate assessment. Common examples include patients that come to the ED for insulin or blood pressure Rx refills. A typical ED intake charge by the hospital is $1,100-1,500. Many of these patients arrive with no exacerbation of their primary ailment a several days remaining of their prescription, but claim they don't have to wait as long if they come to the ED (I find this hard to believe). Anyway, in most cases the local taxpayer ends up paying for the ED intake. We also see children being brought in for vaccinations. Again, a ED intake charge in addition to the vaccination (usually charged to the taxpayers) when the child can receive vaccinations at the county health department. My state (Oklahoma) has a program that provides these vaccinations to children free of charge as opposed to ~$1200 via the ED.
I was discovering that life just simply isn't fair and bask in the unsung glory of knowing that each obstacle overcome along the way only adds to the satisfaction in the end. Nothing great, after all, was ever accomplished by anyone sulking in his or her misery.