Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Not Only In Texas....ALL ER's Abused

"Frequent Fliers"

They are why, when you or your family member is hurt or really sick, it seems to take forever to get some help. They overload an already overloaded system daily. If you were to check, you'd find that ambulance companies transport many of these people also...because they know that if they arrive via EMS, they get right in - a warm cot, maybe some food and lots of attention.

Primary care docs don't want them - no money in it. Mental Health services are underfunded and overwhelmed. So the answer? How about instead of raising taxes, we get rid of a bloated HHS system and spend the money on actually helping these people?
clipped from

9 patients made nearly 2,700 ER visits in Texas

AUSTIN, Texas – Just nine people accounted for nearly 2,700 of the emergency room visits in the Austin area during the past six years at a cost of $3 million to taxpayers and others, according to a report. The patients went to hospital emergency rooms 2,678 times from 2003 through 2008, said the report from the nonprofit Integrated Care Collaboration, a group of health care providers who care for low-income and uninsured patients.

The average emergency room visit costs $1,000. Hospitals and taxpayers paid the bill through government programs such as Medicare and Medicaid, Kitchen said.

Eight of the nine patients have drug abuse problems, seven were diagnosed with mental health issues and three were homeless. Five are women whose average age is 40, and four are men whose average age is 50, the report said, the Austin American-Statesman reported Wednesday.

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