Is it Illegal for a Hospital to Refuse Treatment?

When you or a loved one need medical care, the only thing on your mind is getting them to a facility that can treat them quickly. You should never have to be worried about a hospital refusing care in an emergency situation or while treatment for a condition is ongoing. At The Weitz Firm, LLC we are here to help if you or a loved one have been harmed due to a refusal to care by the hospital. We will investigate what happened and get to work securing the compensation you deserve. Call us today when you need a Philadelphia refusal to treat patients attorney.

Can a hospital refuse to treat a patient?

Answering this question depends on the type of treatment we are talking about. In 1985, Congress passed the Emergency Medical and Treatment Labor Act (EMTLA) that forbids the denial of care to indigent or uninsured patients because they cannot pay in an emergency situation. Care must be provided in the absence of medical treatment could be expected to result in:

  • The health of a person being placed in serious jeopardy
  • The impairment of a bodily function
  • Serious dysfunction of a body part or bodily function
  • Inadequate time to safety transfer a pregnant woman to another facility before delivery or the transfer would pose a threat to the health and safety of the woman or child

The law also prohibits the transfer of a patient to another facility while care is being administered. Medical care cannot be suspended once it is initiated.

  • This law does not prohibit the hospital from asking about a patient’s ability to pay.

If a hospital, whether public or private, refuses a person treatment in an emergency situation and a patient is harmed, they could be held liable for any damages sustained. The EMTLA applies to all hospitals and emergency departments that accept Medicare, effectively applying the law to all hospitals. Under the law, patients who are refused care and injured can receive “those damages available for personal injury under the law of the State in which the hospital is located, and such equitable relief as is appropriate.”

When a patient is stabilized and treatment discontinued, private hospitals and most public hospitals have the right to refuse further treatment.

We are ready to get to work on your case

If you or someone you love has been harmed due to a hospital refusing treatment, please seek legal assistance today. At The Weitz Firm, LLC our qualified and experienced team is ready to get to work on your behalf. We want to investigate what happened in your case so we can secure:

  • Coverage of your past, current, and future medical expenses
  • Recovery of lost wages if you are unable to work
  • Coverage of physical therapy
  • Pain and suffering damages
  • Loss of enjoyment of life damages
  • Possible punitive damages against the negligent party

If you need a Philadelphia hospital refusal to treat attorney, you can contact us for a free consultation by clicking here or calling 267-587-6240.



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