Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act

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What Is EMTALA?
The Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA) is a federal law that regulates how hospitals must treat patients with an emergency medical condition or who are in active labor (i.e., about to give birth).  EMTALA only applies to hospitals that accept Medicare and Medicaid patients, which almost all hospitals in the United States do, and covers patients regardless of whether they have health insurance. 
 
What Does EMTALA Require?
If a patient comes to a hospital's emergency room, the hospital must:
If a pregnant woman comes to a hospital's emergency room, the hospital must:
What Do These Terms Mean Under EMTALA?
The law defines these terms, but the meaning largely depends on the doctor's medical judgment. 
When Can a Patient Be Transferred?
A patient whose condition has been stabilized can be transferred, if the following requirements are also met:
Do I Need an Attorney?
If you believe you have been denied medical treatment that is required under EMTALA, you should talk to a personal injury attorney.  An experienced personal injury attorney can examine your case to determine if you were denied proper care, and bring a lawsuit if necessary.

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Last Modified: 06-24-2014 08:03 AM PDT

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