In response to the March 17 article regarding “working people whose only choice is an emergency room”: There is another emergency room gap that should be addressed, and it affects every person in Spokane. There is no after-hours urgent care for minor medical attention except at the hospital emergency rooms. Citizens of Spokane are held hostage and forced to go to an emergency room if care is required.
I recently had a fall late on a Sunday afternoon that required three stitches to the bridge of my nose and a tetanus shot. There were no urgent care centers open, and I was forced to go to the emergency room at Holy Family Hospital. The bill for the hospital came to $1,300 and the bill from the doctor came to $750, so $2,000 total.
I am on unemployment with no medical insurance, but I am responsible and do have some income and savings. Therefore, I do not qualify for assistance in paying the bill. I am quite willing to pay reasonable charges for the service rendered. I phoned an urgent care center in my neighborhood and asked what they would charge for the same service I received at the emergency room.
They quoted $260.