With the growing battle over health care getting more heated by the day, the topic of children’s health care brings a more solemn, emotional subject into the mix, causing a stir in the hearts of any parents concerned about the well being of their children within the health care industry.
Mental health care and physical health care for children has become a greatly highlighted topic in the news lately, with both parents and physicians working together to try and keep children out of the ER for easily treatable issues, whether the health problems are mental or physical.
With a tremendous lack of insurance coverage for children’s health care, emergency rooms across the country see a high number of children every day for health care that could easily be acquired (and for a lot less dollars) from a physician’s office.
Health issues as simple as a mild ear infection that could be treated with an antibiotic prescription from a family doctor have become common emergency room ailments treated by ER doctors for children whose families are without any sort of health insurance.
Not only does the lack of insurance hurt children’s health care, lack of funding in public school systems can also cause health care financial woes. This is especially true in the areas of children’s mental health care.
Looking at the story involving a boy named Gabriel whose school called emergency medical services on several occasions to bring the boy to the emergency room for psychological observation, we see how the health care system, as well as the liberties taken by public entities can cause a struggle in the area of children’s health care.
Numerous times, the school called Emergency Medical Services (EMS) to transport the boy to the emergency department due to classroom disruptions, and each of those times, the hospital psychiatrist cleared the boy to return to school the next day, each time, stating he did not require hospital admittance.
Once again, the EMS was called to transport the boy to the ER due to classroom disruptions. Many students who face certain health care issues, especially those that are considered special needs, are put in classrooms designed to benefit these needs, and give an appropriate amount of attention, often with a 12-1 student to teacher ratio, allowing for fewer disruptions or escalations.
Gabriel’s school claimed to lack funding for these arrangements, a statement the administration of the school made, and stuck by during an administrative hearing. The discussion came down to what amount of children’s health care a school should be responsible for.
After repeated meetings and complaints filed by his mother, the special services were rendered for Gabriel- and not surprisingly, his behavior greatly improved.
The rising costs of children’s health care and insurance are not going to lower until the number of unnecessary emergency room visits by the uninsured is drastically lowered. This will not change until funding and insurance for children’s health care is more readily accessible for the average person, and until outside entities lose the ability to take liberties in children’s health care issues that are not high in urgency.
**The story of Gabriel can be found from the April 8, 2012 edition of the NYT**
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