Can a Doctor Refuse a Patient Without Insurance Treatment?
If you are uninsured and are wondering if a doctor can decline you treatment because you do not have insurance, you should know that a few factors come into play. Maybe you cannot afford insurance, or just got a new job and you are waiting for your new insurance coverage to begin. However, accidents and injury never occur when it is convenient, so they can happen when you do not have any coverage. Although doctors have the right to refuse patients legally, it is uncommon for them to do so because they have made an ethical promise to take care of sick and injured people upon graduating medical school. States have their own specific laws about a doctor’s right to refuse service to an uninsured patient. Each case is different, but if a hospital or doctor declined to treat you because you did not have insurance coverage, you need to contact a malpractice attorney immediately. He or she can determine before you file a lawsuit if you have a good case. If the refusal of treatment caused your medical condition to worsen in a severe manner, you may be deemed eligible for compensation. Medical expenses and lost wages can be included in this settlement.
Right to Refuse
Doctors possess the legal right to decline medical care to patients for many reasons. Some include that the patient is only seeking treatment so they can receive a narcotic that they are addicted to, if no visible signs of illness are present, if a patient is acting destructive, or if the doctor has no immediate openings and cannot accept new patients. Many times, patients seeking medical attention are not refused treatment, rather they are made to wait in line or a waiting room for hours in order to get the care they need. This usually occurs when patients go to urgent care or the emergency room, and can cause a patient to leave out of anger. This is not a case of denied treatment. Priority is the main factor in doctors refusing treatment. For example, if you have a broken toe and walk into an urgent care clinic or emergency room, but someone else comes in ten minutes later with a gunshot wound, they will receive treatment first because their injury is more serious.
Contact an Attorney
You should consider reaching out to a personal injury lawyer such as the personal injury lawyer Salt Lake City UT locals turn to. if you want to pursue a lawsuit. He or she can help confirm or deny whether medical treatment was legally or illegally denied or if there was an act of negligence present.
Thanks to authors at Rasmussen Miner for insight into Personal Injury Law.