Category Archives: EMTALA BS

ENTER THE FOR-PROFIT ER

Scalpel has a good post on free-standing ERs that refuse to participate in Medicare or Medicaid and are thus immune to EMTALA. These outfits are likely to produce handwringing among those uncomfortable with such emergency medical services being performed by providers who can’t feel the hot breath of Big Brother on their necks. Before long we’ll be reading a solemn Health Affairs [...]

EMTALA A GOOD LAW? YOU’RE JOKING, RIGHT?

Graham advises us that EMTALA “is a good law,” then gives us several reasons to regard it as an exceptionally bad piece of legislation: The problem with EMTALA is that it provides too much potential for abuse … If you were to look online or eavesdrop in a doctor’s lounge, likely “abuse of medical resources by certain [...]

ER WAIT TIMES INCREASING: DUH! NO KIDDING?

Single-payer zealots Steffie Woolhandler, David Himmelstein, et al, have produced a study confirming the blindingly obvious fact that ER wait times are increasing. From 1997 to 2004, the median wait to see an ER doctor went from 22 minutes to 30 minutes. For heart attack victims, the median wait jumped from 8 to 20 minutes. None of this will come as [...]

ER OVERCROWDING & GOV’T MEDDLING

The CDC’s report on ER overcrowding is out, and the news isn’t good. ED visits are up 20 percent over the last ten years and the number of EDs actually available to treat these patients has dropped by 9% during the same period. What could be causing this? GruntDoc has a nice, succinct theory: If [...]

ER Wait Times Increased by Government Meddling

A new study shows that the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA), in addition to being a huge financial burden on hospitals and physicians, has dramatically increased wait times in America’s emergency rooms: EMTALA is another example of federal legislation that hurts the very people that it was meant to protect: low-income patients [...]

HOSPITALS DON’T SHIFT COSTS FROM THE UNINSURED TO THE INSURED

I haven’t devoted much time to Managed Care Matters, but I had assumed that Joe Paduda was reasonably well informed on the nuances of health care. So, having followed a link from Kevin, MD to Paduda’s site, I was surprised to find him promulgating a myth that few people with knowledge of the industry take seriously. Commenting on the costs [...]

EMTALA A MONEY MAKER? PLEASE TELL ME YOU’RE KIDDING.

Occasionally, I read a post on some blog that is so reality-challenged that I suspect a hoax. Kevin, MD links to just such a post today. Having discovered (rather belatedly) that EMTALA doesn’t require any ER to treat a non-emergent patient once a medical screening has been performed, “girlvet? wonders why such patients are not [...]