Thursday, June 24, 2004

Parkland: public hospital blues.

The Dallas Morning News' Sherry Jacobson has been doing a fine job in two recent pieces (6/23, 6/24) covering Parkland's financial woes. Bottom line: Parkland's caught in The Big Squeeze: Federal law requires the hospital to provide emergency medical care to anyone who needs it, regardless of their county (our country) of residence. But state law requires other counties to reimburse Dallas only for care provided to indigents. And each county gets to define "indigency" as it sees fit. So Collin County, which long ago decided it did not want to tax its own residents for indigent health care, has defined indigency to top out at about $4,000 a year for a family of four (about 1/4 the federal definition of poverty). Any Collin County resident making more than that gets treated by Parkland at Dallas County's expense. What is wrong with this picture?
posted by tommayo, 10:27 PM

Health care law (including public health law, medical ethics, and life sciences), with digressions into constitutional law, poetry, and other things that matter