Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Don't Overstay Your Welcome!!!

I am ALL for providing emergency support for those in need...even criminals such as illegal aliens. I am NOT in favor of providing routine or even non emergency care for these criminals at taxpayer expense and FURTHERMORE...I am not in favor of turning a blind eye to the fact that these people are here ILLEGALLY. After we foot the medical bill for them...they should be immediately deported. My generosity and compassion evidently has some bounds huh?!


Tuesday, May 10, 2005

U.S. pays for care of illegal aliens
Treatment money for border states



WASHINGTON -- The Bush administration said yesterday that it would start paying hospitals and doctors for providing emergency care to illegal immigrants.

The money, totaling $1 billion, will be available for services provided from today through September 2008. Congress provided the money as part of the 2003 law that expanded Medicare to cover prescription drugs, but the new payments have nothing to do with the Medicare program.

Members of Congress from border states had sought the money. They said treatment of illegal immigrants imposed a huge financial burden on many hospitals, which are required to provide emergency care to patients who need it, regardless of their immigration status or ability to pay.
Under the new program, hospitals are supposed to ask patients for documents to substantiate payment claims. But Dr. Mark McClellan, administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, said a hospital should not directly ask a patient "if he or she is an undocumented alien."

Instead, he said, hospitals can try to establish a patient's status by analyzing the answers to "indirect questions": Is the person eligible for Medicaid? (If so, payment is generally not available under the new program.) Has the person reported a foreign place of birth? Does the person have a border-crossing card like those issued to Mexican citizens? Does the person have a foreign passport, a foreign driver's license or a foreign identification card?

The Bush administration abandoned a proposal that would have required many hospitals to ask patients if they were U.S. citizens or legal immigrants.

"In no circumstances are hospitals required to ask people about their citizenship status," McClellan said yesterday.

Hospital executives and immigrant rights groups had said such questions would deter illegal immigrants from seeking care and could lead to serious public health problems by increasing the spread of communicable diseases.

Cecilia Munoz, a vice president of the National Council of La Raza, a Latino civil rights group, said the new requirements were an improvement over the original proposal but would still discourage some immigrants from seeking treatment.

"Hospitals will have to ask confusing, highly technical questions about immigration documents," Munoz said. "That will create a perception in the Latino community that you have to show your papers in order to get emergency care. That's a misperception, but it may be enough to deter some people from seeking care."

The new program is run by the Department of Health and Human Services. McClellan said the department would not provide information about illegal immigrants to law enforcement officials for use in "routine civil immigration proceedings." But in rare cases, he said, the information may be used in criminal investigations.

The largest allocations this fiscal year are going to California, which will receive $70.8 million; Texas, $46 million; Arizona, $45 million; New York, $12.3 million; Illinois, $10.3 million; Florida, $8.7 million; and New Mexico, $5.1 million.


Sarah said...

This is ridiculous. Why should anyone who is not an american citizen have any rights whatsoever. this is stupid. they should not be here in the first place and we sure shouldn't be having to pay for them to get medical treatment. If they shouldn't be here in the first place then if they need medical help they should go back to where they came from and seek it there. They have no RIGHT to come here ILLEGALY and expect for us to pay for them to get help. Screw'em. If they are detered from going to hospitals because they are afraid of the "technical questions" that they are going to be answered, then they obviously aren't supposed to be here in the first place because any "TRUE AMERICAN" is NOT going to bypass getting help for medical issues if they really need it. I think that this is stupid and ridiculous and I have to say this is one of the stupidist things that i have since we have made it available to people on welfare to withdraw money from ATM machines. WHAT A JOKE.

Jacob said...

Sarah, American citizen or not people should have rights; having someone else pay your medical bills is not a right, it is a privilidge. This problem is simply a symptom of a much larger issue. I think we should really take a look at our immigration system which in its current incarnation makes it easier to cheat than to be honest. For example, people who arrive here on a tourist visa pregnant deliver their child on American soil and use their child's birth citizenship to immigrate, someone legitimately trying to get here through the Visa lottery system has a tiny chance and usually waits several years if they even get fortunate enough to land a visa. We should be rewarding people who come here and help build this country (like it or not, this is a nation of immigrants) instead of those who somehow snuck in. I immigrated to this country as a child (legally), and this is my home, however I see many people born here who do nothing but consume without producing anything at all and assume that because of their birthplace, a factor beyond their control that they are somehow better than everyone else and don't need to earn their keep. I work hard, pay my taxes and watch my work and money go to support not only illegal immigrants, but Americans that feel they are entitled to live off of someone else's work. The problem is the attitude that you can take without giving, not what language someone speaks or their nationality.

Thank you for your time.