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  • HealthCare Again-Duke Medical Center

    Just had an experience with someone this weekend at the Emergency Room.

    We were at Duke Medical Center. Person was having acute abdominal pain. Arrived at 1:30 p.m. and preliminary information was taken. Persons pain always there, rocking back and forth, crying some.

    At 4:30 p.m. a Physicians Assistant was seen. More information was taken. No medications given. Blood taken for testing. Persons pain still there, nothing different.

    At 9:50 p.m. the person was "taken back" from the waiting area. At around 11:00 p.m. a physician was seen and some medication given. Some relief came from this. No diagnosis has been given yet. A couple of guesses.

    Since some degree of relief and stabilization was achieved, the person was checked out with instructions to schedule some more testing.

    The time delays seem pretty bad to me. What do others think?

    Some observations that I did see:

    There were NOT a large number of people in the ER waiting room. Maybe 10. And there was no real turnover or logic to the turnover. No "triage" if you will.

    There were many wusses in the ER. No reason for them to be there.

    I dare say 70% should not be there. Small cut on the finger. Twisted ankle. Just don't feel good. Many things that could be addressed by a General Practitioner for probably smaller costs. But I'm no Doc either. Just a common sense observation.

    The admissions people are completely oblivious to what is occurring in front of them. Seen one lady that obviously was one of the most in need. Staggering around vomiting in a pan. Not one person at the desks (3 to 4) did anything to expedite getting her in. Once again, no needs based entrance.

    Finally, the person I was with..... was Fully Insured.

    J.C.

  • #2
    Re: HealthCare Again-Duke Medical Center

    Right or wrong one of the arguments for a National Health Care system is people without insurance go to the Emergency Room for non-emergency treatment because they cannot be turned away. I have never quite figured out why the hospitals do not pursue those people to collect the charges. Even if they sold the debts to a collection agency for 50% they would recover something.

    Mark
    "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

    I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: HealthCare Again-Duke Medical Center

      Originally posted by ToUtahNow View Post
      Right or wrong one of the arguments for a National Health Care system is people without insurance go to the Emergency Room for non-emergency treatment because they cannot be turned away. I have never quite figured out why the hospitals do not pursue those people to collect the charges. Even if they sold the debts to a collection agency for 50% they would recover something.

      Mark
      25% would be way more than the insurance payout the hospital gets, and I'm sure the bill collectors would manage to make a profit on it.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: HealthCare Again-Duke Medical Center

        Around 10 hours from entrance to treatment for acute abdominal pain for an insured person. (Not sure if insurance should even be a factor.)

        Do others see similar things where they are located? Should this just be what I should expect to be the norm?

        I haven't been to an ER in quite a while so I'm curious.

        Thanks.

        J.C.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: HealthCare Again-Duke Medical Center

          I've been to the emergency room several time for acute abdominal pain from intestinal blockages and adhesions(scar tissue), pain does cause you to rock back and forth, pull your hair out and wish you were dead. Only pain worse was from a kidney stone (give me the gun, I'll shoot myself). Remember it is the "practice " of medicine and mistakes are made in both diagnosis and treatment. If a ankle looks twisted but is broken it can lead to death (bone marrow leaking into the blood stream). We need emergency rooms and urgent care facilities. We need good doctors and nurses and the opportunity to be seen when we are hurt or sick. What we don't need in my opinion is the middle man insurance companies generating paperwork, computer files and delays. Personal responsibility would sure help us reduce healthcare costs, you want to rock climb, smoke, drink and do drugs then shoulderr the cost above the person eating wisely and exercising on a regular basis. My HMO wanted to charge me for an emergency room visit because they said it was not life threatening. I made my case and they did pay the bill, but I agree the emergency rooms are abused. What does the future hold? Will the elderly or those deemed not worth the cost be turned away or given an option to die quietly? Scary times.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: HealthCare Again-Duke Medical Center

            Originally posted by JCsPlumbing View Post
            Around 10 hours from entrance to treatment for acute abdominal pain for an insured person. (Not sure if insurance should even be a factor.)

            Do others see similar things where they are located? Should this just be what I should expect to be the norm?

            I haven't been to an ER in quite a while so I'm curious.

            Thanks.

            J.C.
            That is way too long for several reasons. If pain is due to a severe blockage blood flow through the intestines could be disrupted and part of the intestine could die. If the pain is abdominal but due to a kidney stone it could lead to kidney failure. What if it was a ruptured appendix? Peritonitis sets in, I had this when I ws a kid and it just about killed me. The result is a massive infection of the peritoneum ( the sack in which your internal organs reside). I'd say anything over an hour with that kind of pain is risking way too much for the patient and hospital. Hope all is better with the patient.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: HealthCare Again-Duke Medical Center

              What you do next time is ask for a large garbage can, and make the loudest damn dry heaving noises in the ER.


              If you puke, take that garbage can and start slinging it across the admitting desks, walk up and actually hurl on their desk, then ask for ice tea.


              I've kicked chairs over, I've thrown clipboards and pens, I've entered ER rooms without even being admitted (kidney stone) and


              I don't care. I'm just another episode of their boring life and the bill is still the same.

              I'm going in later tonight for a whistling nose. This is serious.
              Northern Kentucky Plumbers Twitter Feed | Plumbing Videos

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              • #8
                Re: HealthCare Again-Duke Medical Center

                if you aren't brought in by ambulance you Will be waiting a while.
                if an ambulance brings you in, you will go straight back, triage won't even think twice. I don't know why it's like that.
                No, it's not rocket science, it's plumbing and unlike rocket science it requires a license.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: HealthCare Again-Duke Medical Center

                  I looked for an urgent care doctor today, not a single one within 100 miles of 10567 listed on the Blue Cross/Blue Shield website. Seems like having a few more 24-hour doctors without all the trapping of an emergency room could save quite a bit of money.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: HealthCare Again-Duke Medical Center

                    Originally posted by cpw View Post
                    I looked for an urgent care doctor today, not a single one within 100 miles of 10567 listed on the Blue Cross/Blue Shield website. Seems like having a few more 24-hour doctors without all the trapping of an emergency room could save quite a bit of money.
                    I absolutely agree. There are many medical situations where urgent care would suffice and freeup the E.R.'s for true medical emergencies. Last year when I went to the E.R. at two in the morning I thought I was having a reaction to a new medicne for my blood pressure. I didn't think it would be wise to wait until the following morning, but as you said there is no 24 hour alternative and as a result the bill was $800 instead of a $ 60 or $70. I don't blame the insurers for trying to reign in the spending, but in deciding whether to seek treatment or not we are playing with our health and possibly our lives.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: HealthCare Again-Duke Medical Center

                      BTW, as a positive ER experience, my wife went to Hudson Valley Hospital Center at 8PM and by 9PM she was home with an injection of antibiotics, and a prescription for more antibiotics and painkillers.

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