2011/02/08 – Too Poor to Treat

Maria Sanchez was hospitalized and waiting for a surgical procedure that would have removed a banana-sized tumor that was located along spine and between her vertebrae. The pressure of the tumor caused Maria (24) the use of her right hand. Six days into her stay at the University of Texas’ John Sealy Hospital, a doctor informed her in spanish that she would have to leave the hospital because she was an undocumented alien. They doctor then told her that she should seek treatment in Mexico.

Of course, a hospital kicking out a patient with a potentially fatal condition brings up a load of ethical and legal questions that would be very easy to solve under an Equal Money system. Under the current system,  there is no law that says a hospital must care and treat people who are unable to pay or are uninsured, however, that Ms. Sanchez was in the hospital for nearly a week creates an ethical problem, because the hospital had treated Sanchez which made them ethically responsible for her condition. The medical community is required by their own principles to care for people regardless their financial situation. The hospital’s action  could lead to a severe diminishment of Maria Sanchez’s quality of life, or even death.

If this event happened under an Equal Money system, there would be no discussion of one’s inability to pay or their national origin. People get sick from time to time, and they need treatment and support. There would be no need for hospitals to worry about whether the sick people they treat will have enough money to pay them. There will be no financial incentive to be a doctor, and that’s how it should be, because the way the system is running now, too much of being a doctor is about the money.




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