Emergency Hospital Care After a Car Accident for the Uninsured
Written by Greg on May 4, 2020
As a personal injury attorney in Houston, I see victims that have been seriously injured in accidents almost every day. Many of the innocent victims of a car accident or a truck wreck, are uninsured, meaning that they carried no health insurance at the time of the accident.
One of the first things a hospital will do in their “triage” is to find out whether the personal injury victim carries insurance or not. Unfortunately, for those who do not carry health insurance, the care they receive in most cases is not the same as the care that a person would receive if they have health insurance. People have broken bones and are told they don’t, many people are discharged with severe injuries that are not immediately life-threatening, and many necessary treatments and testing are omitted.
Without a doubt, the trend is to patch up the innocent victim who does not carry health insurance as quickly as possible with the minimum possible care. Because many times the necessary testing is not done, the victim has no idea the extent of their injuries or what needs to be done to treat them until they follow up with another doctor they pay.
To add insult to injury, the hospital will almost always file a “hospital lien,” which in Texas is a statutory lien on any money that may come out of a personal injury claim from the accident. That the hospital seeks to be paid is not the problem; the problem is the hospital “jacks up” the billing to the ridiculous level and then asserts to be paid the whole amount. A rule of thumb is that the hospital will file a lien seeking about three to five times more than they would expect to be paid by a health insurance company for the same service.
So not only is the uninsured personal injury victim not given necessary testing, diagnosis, and treatment, they are overcharged for the treatment provided.
Houston personal injury victims who are uninsured as far as health insurance, should consider following up with a doctor of their choice as quickly as possible after discharge from the emergency room. So, they can obtain the necessary treatment and testing to speed their recovery.
Although it is often difficult for families to pay the high cost of medical care out of their pocket, it is often necessary due to the lack of needed treatment in the emergency rooms.
Accident victims who have been injured through no fault of their own should look for the best car accident lawyer near me who may be able to help them obtain needed medical care.
If you would like to speak with a personal injury attorney in Houston call us at 281-587-1111!