Saturday, December 04, 2004

ER-- Safety Net of US Health Care

ERs operate as the safety net for our health care system. COBRA/EMTALA legislation mandate that ERs see and treat any and all patients. However, with increases in the numbers of uninsured and decreases in federal and private reimbursement, ERs are losing money while treating more patients than ever before. Currently, 80% of ERs in the US are running at capacity. The following list discribes health care populations who fall into the ER safety net: 1. EMS ground/air 2. Uninsured 3. Patient dumping (other hospitals) 4. After hours 5. Nursing homes 6. Disaster response 7. Prisons/Jails 8. Clinic overflow 9. Homeless 10. Psych Crisis

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