“Patient dumping” refers to the practice of discharging or transferring a medically unstable patient for financial reasons. It is a practice of treating paying patients and leaving those unable to pay to government programs or charitable organizations to deal with. More than 40 million Americans are uninsured and are at risk for this practice.
In 1986 the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA) was passed to prohibit patient dumping. Before transferring a patient with an emergency medical condition, a physician must certify that the patient is stable enough to be moved or the benefits of being transferred outweigh the risks involved in the transfer. In addition, a patient cannot be transferred without the permission of the receiving facility.
Despite being against the law, patient dumping is still of great concern today. Recent problems experienced by some have emphasized how economic, instead of medical considerations, are playing a major role in medical treatment decisions. Patients are still being denied access to healthcare for financial reasons. Patient dumping is a dangerous and disgraceful activity.
If you live in Atlanta, Georgia or the surrounding area and you suspect you or someone you love has been the victim of patient dumping, please contact the Atlanta office of Robbins & Associates, P.C. today to schedule a confidential consultation with an experienced attorney, at no cost to you, to protect your legal rights.