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Who needs a Dr when you can just dial 911 and go to the ER.

Posted 12-21-2010 at 19:26 by dwhatley

With 10 years of EMS experience I have noticed a disturbing trend in the past few years. The majority of calls we are responding to are no longer life threatning emergencies. The system is overwhelmed with calls for general illnesses that should be taken care of by your family physician. Complaints ranging from nausea, fever, soar throat, diarrhea, and other common illnesses are in no way life threatning. And to make matters worse these people are calling 911, which activates at the least am emergency response from the local fire and ems departments. The odds of an emergency vehicle being involved in an accident are extremely high while running lights and sirens.

The overwhelming mojority of these non emergency 911 calls are from people who are on some sort of government entitilement program such as medicaid. In Alabama where I work, there is no copay of any kind for medicaid patients. For instance I have a $300 er copay with my Blue Cross policy, as apposed to a $40 copay for Dr office visit. Its pretty obvious which one I would rather pay. But these people who dont have to pay a single cent to see the Dr has no motivation to not go to the er, or call 911 so they dont have to wait!

This trend Im afraid will put alot of private ambulance services out of business and require a take over of the EMS services by the government. Surely this will only get worse as our President has made it his priority to get as many people on government managed healthcare his top priority. America we need to do something about the abuse of the system. I propose that begin to wean these people of off these wasteful entitlements and push them to become useful members of society. I believe it would be a great idea to start requiring copays for medicaid just as the private insurance companies do.
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  1. Old Comment
    As a person who works day in and day out in an ER, I can not agree more with you! EMS is not a cab service and the ER is not a place to get a "check-up" (actual words from patient). It's amazing what people THINK they are entitled to!
    Posted 03-11-2011 at 21:14 by Ima19man Ima19man is offline

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