Asked about citizenship during triage - page 5

A friend went to the ER, and while being triaged he was asked if he was a US citizen ( this was in the USA of course). Is this customary? I never recalled being asked when I was a patient, nor do I... Read More

  1. by   WKShadowRN
    Quote from inshallamiami
    Well that makes sense, I just don't recall being asked about money, even in triage, but if that's how it's done now I'm not surprised! And so I guess it's customary. Huh. I'm not concerned about the quality of care, I still like to believe that most, nurses care for all people equally. But asking if you are legal when Sick or hurt must be frightening, do they then Contact ICE?
    I know for a fact that many immigrants fear this and put off seeking treatment . It's unfortunate and not right.
  2. by   JKL33
    For risk screening, "Have you been out of the county in [time frame]" will suffice, and is in fact the proper question because someone's US citizenship doesn't preclude exposure.
  3. by   MunoRN
    Deleted, wrong thread
  4. by   Cathyhil
    Absolutely not!!! I'm not a citizen but I've been paying taxes as a legal resident RN here for 26 years. You need to remember that unless you're a full blooded Native American, you're the descendant of immigrants. That is simply ludicrous.
  5. by   MunoRN
    Quote from nehneh14
    We'll agree to disagree. This is not the way it has worked at any institution I have worked in in my 25 year nursing career. The uninsured are referred to the business office or client affairs and payment plans are arranged. No immigration status involved.
    It's extremely rare for an uninsured person to be able to pay their entire bill by private pay, what billing offices typically do is to calculate a much smaller amount that the person might actually pay instead of declaring bankruptcy, so this wouldn't do anything to help this hospitals remain open. The billing office would still need to ask about immigration status in order to determine if the hospital qualifies for reimbursement.

    I'm not sure why it would be better for hospitals to never ask this and as a result no longer be able to operate, is it better to not be asked this but die because there is no facility to treat you, or be asked this in order for a facility to exist to give you the treatment you need.
  6. by   Oemgee
    This is not normal, nor should it be. It is not our job as healthcare workers to judge immigration status any more than any other way that people are classified. There is really no excuse for this question and yes, patient relations should be contacted if not going straight to hospital administraton.
  7. by   Mini2544
    That's so weird. I can't imagine asking that ever. That's a case management question for emergency medicaid coverage or something.
  8. by   AbstracRN2B
    Actually there was someone in a hospital that notified ICE about the parents of the child that needed emergency care. This makes me think of that situation.

    Border Patrol Arrests Near Safe Zones Worry Immigrant Advocates : NPR

    If they expect your friend was an illegal they might have been asking to report them, it is happening these days.

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