Obligations of Health Care Organization’s in meeting Patients’ Legal Rights

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HGMT 372

Emergency Care

Emergency Services and Care-The medical screening, examination, and evaluation by a physician, or, to the extent permitted by applicable law, by other appropriate personnel under the supervision of a physician, to determine if an emergency medical condition exists and, if it does, the care treatment or surgery for a covered service by a physician necessary to relieve or eliminate the emergency medical condition, within the service capability of a hospital.” (Public Health, 2005)

 

1. Official Title of the Law

According to research The Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA) was passed by the US Congress in 1986 as part of the Consolidated Omnibus Reconciliation Act (COBRA), much of which dealt with Medicare issues. The law’s initial intent was to ensure patient access to emergency medical care and to prevent the practice of patient dumping, in which uninsured patients were transferred, solely for financial reasons, from private to public hospitals without consideration of their medical condition or stability for the transfer. Although barely noticed, EMTALA has created a storm of controversy over the ensuing years, and it is now considered one of the most comprehensive laws guaranteeing nondiscriminatory access to emergency medical care and thus to the health care system. Even though its initial language covered the care of emergency medical conditions, through interpretations by the Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA) (now known as the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services), the body that oversees EMTALA enforcement, as well as various court decisions, the statute now potentially applies to virtually all aspects of patient care in the hospital setting. Thus, all physicians on the hospital staff, not just emergency physicians, need to be familiar with its general requirements. (NCBI, 2001)

 

Obligations of Health Care Organization’s in meeting Patients’ Legal Rights

 

References (2001, April 14). Retrieved from NCBI: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1305897/ (2005, July 15). Retrieved from Public Health: https://publichealth.gwu.edu/departments/healthpolicy/CHPR/nnhs4/PCCM/subheads/pccm116.html#:~

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