During the past eight months, Georgia Health News and WebMD have investigated violations of a longstanding federal law on emergency room care.
Our investigation found that over a 27-month period, about 1 in 7 of these ER violations involved patients who were having a mental health crisis, including having suicidal thoughts.
Many patients battling mental illness did not get adequate services at ERs under standards established by the federal Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act, or EMTALA, our investigation showed.
The consequences of these failures can be tragic. Here’s a video produced by WebMD about a Wisconsin man who had bipolar disorder, and arrived at a local emergency room seeking treatment. (Click below photo to view video)