Sunday, May 29, 2011

Now...and Free

Me: "What are you here for today, Sir?"

Patient: " I am here to have my gallbladder removed."

Me: "Are you having any symptoms?"

Patient: "No, but I have in the past, and they told me I need to get scheduled to get it out."

Me: "Well you should definitely do that, then. But this is an emergency department. We can only consult a surgeon if you are having an emergency with your gall bladder. It sounds like you need to follow up with a surgeon."

Patient: "Look, I don't wanna do that. It costs money. Now get me a damn surgeon. I want the surgery NOW, and I want it for FREE."

He got kicked out shortly after. This is the country we live in. Imagine if I went into a mechanic shop with my car and demanded them to fix it for free and right away. Gese.

ER Doc


NP Odyssey said...

Comparing a car to a human?
It's all hypothetical and he was not critical, but if your car doesn't get fixed you don't die.

Sassy said...

Yeah, gee, how heartless are you? Obviously you should have offered to do his surgery for him on the spot. It's not like the emergency room is for emergencies, or anything.

The Nite Nurse said...

Wow. Some people's sense of entitlement shares me. *shaking my head*

Anonymous said...

Today is Memorial Day when people gave their lives for us to be Free. Too bad corporations have hijacked our healthcare system and make quality care available to those who have money and the Emergency Dept. is Not a place primary care.

Shash said...

I truly don't understand the concept of emergency care being free in this country. Even when unemployed, uninsured and about to be foreclosed on, my pal Joey had to pay for his emergency treatment for chest pains. He said he also had to fill out lots and lots of forms for gov't help, which turned him down because his car was worth more than $1200.

Happily, he is employed again and is now paying off his bill in bits and pieces.

Anonymous said...

Shash, it is simple. You either use a fake name and/or address, or you fill out the little form (from the nice lady staffing the business office end of things that night) that asks about your income and assets and you write a string of "0's". Claim you live with your grandmother/cousin/baby-momma who is your sole support and that you have no income or assets at ALL. If you really are an entitled bottom feeder, even if they find you, you have no assets or income to garnish and you don't give a rodent's rump about your credit score. OH---and don't forget that you need juice, a "sammich", another pillow and a better TV remote, and threaten to call the CEO and/or Channel Nine if you don't get all of this (plus duplicates for your "friend" who is feeling poorly now, also) AND your side order of narcotic~IV push, please!

And NP Odyessey....go back to your ivory tower. You have clearly ingested waaaayyy too many ANA and WHO position papers and wouldn't last 15 minutes in an urban ED.

ERP said...

I woulda whipped the scalpel out and offered to do it right then and there.

terri c said...

ERP, you could tell the patient the surgery is free but the anesthetic and the pain medicine will cost. Even better if you could have a resident standing behind you saying, "Oh, GREAT!!! I've never done a gallbladder before!!!" Though I dunno, if the patient is this nuts, he might not understand. You have to hand it to this patient, what a way to seek drugs: demand surgery!

潘文华 said...

Im a 3rd year medical student and I've already seen one JUST like this.