Requires emergency department personnel to conduct physical checks of patients awaiting emergency treatment every fifteen minutes.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the public health law, in relation to requiring emergency department personnel to conduct physical checks of patients awaiting emergency treatment every fifteen minutes
This bill will insure that all people waiting for medical assistance are seen by hospital personnel on a regular basis while waiting to see the acting emergency physician or physician assistant. By providing this service, emergency personnel will be able to keep a watchful eye on those patients to make sure a problem can be addressed immediately if the need should arise.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Section 1. This act shall be known and may be cited as the "New York State Patient Protection Act".
§ 2. The public health law is amended by adding a new section 2827 to read as follows:
§ 2827. Patients waiting for emergency treatment. Emergency department personnel, including nurses, security, or other trained hospital personnel, shall conduct physical checks on the health and wellness of all patients who are waiting emergency treatment at least every fifteen minutes.
§ 3. This act shall take effect immediately.
None exist at this time that would effect this legislation.
Since 2009 the closure of several hospitals throughout the state of New York have forced residents to receive treatment at other local hospitals. The influx of these new patients at these hospitals is quickly overwhelming their respective emergency departments resulting in higher wait times. In New York State alone a non-emergency patient seeking treatment can expect an average wait time of 5 hours or more depending on the hospital. In New York City hospitals the wait can be anywhere from 8-24 hours.
The increases are partially due to the rate of high unemployment in the aftermath of the great recession and also the long term uninsured who have no choice but to use the emergency department as their personal physician.
Also several deaths have occurred recently due to this new normal. A man in his 30's was a patient waiting to be seen at the emergency department of St. Barnabas hospital in the Bronx and died in the waiting room at the time his body was discovered he had been waiting in the emergency department 8 hours.
In 2008 a woman in her late forties died while awaiting treatment at Kings County Hospital in Brooklyn at the time of her death she had been waiting about 24 hours. Currently the State of New York does not have a policy that requires hospitals to check that those who are awaiting treatment are currently present in the emergency department or to also make sure that such persons are alive.
LOCAL FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:
This bill shall take effect 30 days immediately.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 7029 IN SENATE April 21, 2014 ___________Introduced by Sen. LATIMER -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Health AN ACT to amend the public health law, in relation to requiring emergen- cy department personnel to conduct physical checks of patients await- ing emergency treatment every fifteen minutes THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. This act shall be known and may be cited as the "New York state patient protection act". S 2. The public health law is amended by adding a new section 2827 to read as follows: S 2827. PATIENTS WAITING FOR EMERGENCY TREATMENT. EMERGENCY DEPARTMENT PERSONNEL, INCLUDING NURSES, SECURITY, OR OTHER TRAINED HOSPITAL PERSON- NEL, SHALL CONDUCT PHYSICAL CHECKS ON THE HEALTH AND WELLNESS OF ALL PATIENTS WHO ARE AWAITING EMERGENCY TREATMENT AT LEAST EVERY FIFTEEN MINUTES. S 3. This act shall take effect immediately.EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD14757-01-4