EMTALA Still a Risk, But Some Are Letting Down Their Guard
Violations still occur — Administrators surprised by faults in compliance
Despite every hospital’s familiarity with the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act (EMTALA), violations and penalties still occur. There is concern that some healthcare providers have become lax about EMTALA and falsely assume that current procedures are sufficient.
- Staffing challenges and turnover rates can increase the risk of EMTALA violations.
- Court jurisdictions can interpret EMTALA compliance differently from one another.
- A jury recently awarded a plaintiff $1.5 million for an EMTALA violation even though the hospital rendered care.
The Kentucky Supreme Court affirmed an award of punitive damages that was 386 times the hospital’s share of compensatory damages for a violation.
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