Valenzuela Law Firm, PA | Trial Attorney
Attorney Henry E. Valenzuela

How can my rights as a patient impact an ER negligence claim?

On Behalf of | May 13, 2021 | Medical Malpractice

Care providers in the emergency room intentionally ignoring your rights as a patient could lead to you having a negligence claim.

You have specific rights that allow you to be aware of your care and to make important decisions about it. According to WebMD, the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act provides you with a guarantee that you will receive an acceptable level of care when in an ER as long as that facility accepts government health insurance programs.

Stabilization or transfer

If you have a true emergency where your life is in danger, the ER staff should stabilize you right away. You should never have to wait for care.

If the hospital cannot help you, then it should transfer you as soon as possible to a facility that can provide you care. This also requires keeping proper records and ensuring the facility can accept you.

Care delays

If you are in an ER, you can expect that you may not get immediate care if you do not have a serious medical condition. However, you should receive prompt care based upon the nature of your medical needs, and you should never have to wait an unreasonable amount of time without having any care. Triage does not count as care for this requirement.


The ER should never refuse to serve you. Regardless of your condition or reason for the visit, you should be able to have someone assess you at the ER.

Medical professionals have a duty to properly care for patients. You may stand up for your rights and keep in mind that the ER must treat you with proper care regardless of why you are visiting.

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