Hospital officials at Dallas' Parkland Memorial Hospital say they need more beds to handle the excessive number of patients who need care. They have their fingers crossed that a bond measure on the Nov. 4 ballot will provide the funds needed to expand. But that wishful thinking doesn't help Amber Joy Milbrodt. She waited 19 hours in the hospital's emergency department for treatment of a broken leg and never got to see a doctor. To add insult to injury, she got a bill for $162 two weeks later.
Parkland officials say the bill was appropriate because a nurse spent a few minutes checking her vital signs in order to establish Milbrodt's place in line. Fort Worth's large public hospital, John Peter Smith, also charges for a triage assessment, but some other hospitals in Dallas will not charge a person if they never see a doctor.
- read the Houston Chronicle article