I am fuming right now. According to Medicare Discharge Appeal Criteria, an ER Patient cannot appeal being discharged from the ER if they have not yet been admitted to a Hospital Room!
This is pure insanity!
Congress passed a law called EMTALA to specifically ensure that any Hospital patient not be discharged if their condition is not stable. Is Medicare now stating that the ER is not a Hospital and therefore Patients who are not stable can be legally dumped as long as the ER does not document the decline in the Patient's health and just discharges the patient instead?
Is Medicare following a policy that literally spits on the very purpose that EMTALA was created? YES!
Quoting from a site that allegedly advocates for patients who have been wrongfully discharged from the Hospital...
"To appeal your discharge, you must be an inpatient. There is no official way to appeal your release if you are in observation or outpatient status. You can ask your doctor to tell you your status. At your admission and again before discharge, the hospital staff must give you a form called "An Important Message from Medicare." This form includes the phone number for the QIO and tells you what you need to do to appeal the discharge. If the hospital staff did not give you this form, ask for it. By law, the hospital must provide you with this information." end quote.
The above quote just spit on the very concept of EMTALA and the illegality of Patient Dumping! This is insanity. I have found this over and over and over when it comes to finding advocates for Healthcare patients, Patient Advocates are VERY SUBMISSIVE and will ALWAYS SIDE with what they are told by the very people who are AGAINST Patients Rights.
Repeating the specific sentence from the above quote. "There is no official way to appeal your release if you are in observation or outpatient status." end quote.
How can anyone who knows what EMTALA actually means utter such completely incorrect advice? And if the advice is correct, then what a corrupt system we have in place for protecting those who have violated the EMTALA rights of their patients.
Medicare or the people who created the page I am quoting from are apparently saying that the ER can violate a patient's EMTALA rights if the patient has not officially been admitted to a hospital room! How can Medicare sanction illegality and deny appeals that are based on illegal ER actions?
So when Hospital patients are piled up in the hallways of ER rooms waiting to get a room, in theory they could be discharged and the patient would have no right to appeal the discharge decision. This is beyond outrageous. And this situation will only get worse as the present Administration allows 2 million Undocumented to enter the U.S. every year.
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