Quote from sagarcia210
Documented or not, people deserve the right to good health care. To me , there should be no ethical dilema. We as healthcare providers do just that, we PROVIDE CARE!!! It doesn't matter who a person is, what race they are, or if they are documented or not. I wholeheartedly believe that the day a healthcare professional question if they should be providing care or not based on the fact that the people are documented or not, then that should be the day that the healthcare provider step down as such!!!
Was it the fault of the undocumented mother that the helicopter crashed? ABSOLUTELY NOT! It was an ACCIDENT! This mother only wanted what any other mother would want, and that was for her child to have the healthcare that was needed!!!
Your L&D nurse is 100% correct in her assessment of Hispanic mothers. They are here with their families just trying to have a better life. We have a large population of Hispanics where I live. Never once have I seen one abuse their child, or get arrested for drugs. It is a daily occurence for the caucasians.
Personally, I am appalled that any health care provider would even question whether or not care should be provided to ANYONE! The day that happens should be the day that healthcare provider quit healthcare.
Nice. I have reflected on this question quite a bit. I don't happen to agree with you. In your mind, my disagreement means I should quit being a nurse. And if I don't want to quit, the healthcare police should take away my license.
First, as to the "right" to healthcare: If you mean that healthcare should be available to all, regardless of race, creed, sexual orientation, or any other "discriminator," I would agree. If you want to say that all manner of healthcare should be available to all, regardless of ability to pay, my response would be absolutely not. The minute you say this, I will respond by giving you some very good reasons that I need a new HUMMER. But, I can't afford one, so by the same reasoning you use to justify healthcare, I will justify why you (the taxpayer) should buy my new HUMMER. I'd like that with an AM/FM/satellite radio/CD player, please. Bottom line, any thing that must be provided to any group of people at the expense of another group of people cannot be a right.
Does that mean I think the first thing any ER should check for is the ability to pay for care? No, and under the law as it currently exists, no one can be turned away from a hospital based on ability to pay. However, consider some other facts. The cost of healthcare in the US is skyrocketing, in part because many of us are forced to pay for the care (via increases in our own billing) given to those who cannot pay. Also consider, under the law as it exists, illegal aliens (I refuse to use the softer, but less accurate term "undocumented") can demand care at amost any healthcare facility. The facility must give that care, but is not allowed to report the alien to authorities as illegal. It becomes a safe, free ride, at all of our expense. Consider the following scenario:
My wife was a nurse in a major burn center. Burn units are notoriously expensive. If you had a health insurance policy that capped your coverage at about $250,000 (fairly common cap), and were severely burned, you could reach your cap within a couple of weeks in a burn unit. And burn units are not "money makers" for hospitals. Generally, if fully paid for the care of a burned patient, the hospital does little more than break even. My wife cared for a number of illegal aliens at this hospital (a not for profit, Catholic facility), and the hospital was forced to eat the cost of caring for these patients. She often found that the families of these patients were the most demanding, most complaining, quickest to curse a nurse of any patient she cared for. They demanded that you not only cared for the patient, but that you fed them
while they were there. Suppose you, as a nurse, reported this family to the INS, so that when the patient was stable, recovering, and could safely be moved, they could be taken back to whereever they were from, would any legal action be taken? Yes, against YOU for a violation of the patient's privacy. Insanity. The illegal alien gets the free ride, care better than our own citizens. There are many things very wrong with this scenario.
As to your contention that illegal aliens don't commit child abuse, don't get involved in illegal drug activities, etc, nonsense. If you (or the OP's L&D nurse) have never seen it, it's because you haven't looked. I have worked ER, and have seen the children of illegals brought in after hideous abuse. Not worse than other groups, but illegals are not immune.
My FIL is in law enforcement, and works narcotics. Every day, EVERY DAY, a state trooper in the state where he works pulls over a vehicle of illegal aliens transporting illegal drugs. The point is that illegals are, as a group, no better or worse than any other group in the US. There is, however, one significant difference: As a group, every member
of the group called "illegal aliens" is, by definition, a criminal. Simply by being here, they are violating US law.
Does that mean we should deny them treatment? No, but neither should they have better treatment, or more priviledges than what I, as a patient who will pay, should get. And, if they must seek treatment, fine. But there must also be an allowance to report them as illegals, so they can be deported when stable. Sound harsh? Why? Is it any more harsh than the requirement we all have to report suspected child abusers? Whatever arguments you give for not reporting illegal aliens can be extended to not reporting suspected child abuse.
Remember, there is another side to the argument. Just because I don't happen to agree with you does not mean you are somehow a better nurse, or that you belong in healthcare, and I don't. I still give very good care, and the immigration status of the patient is moot. But there needs to be some limitation.
Kevin McHugh, CRNA