Can an Emergency be an Ongoing Thing?
Yes, it can. First, though, how can you thank people like Nonna Bullock, Sharon Walters, and Cheryl Tucker, who commute each week from Hattiesburg to New Orleans to work the night shift at Tulane Medical Center? That dedication to the city is precisely what's so sorely lacking from the Bush administration.
Yet, despite their efforts, the city still has a healthcare crisis that, if it were a patient, would have to be described as critical at best:
CNN spoke to a 71-year-old man in a hospital waiting room who said he had been there for more than 14 hours. Hospital officials say the wait was closer to 10 hours.
"When I walk into the emergency department at any time, there are probably at least 10 to 15 patients waiting to be seen," [Dr. James] Moises said. He added that while they try to treat patients as quickly as possible, they are constantly juggling beds to make room.
More patients, fewer hospitals -- it is a challenge that local emergency medical services workers see daily. "Since we've lost so many hospitals in the area, we don't have a lot of choices of were to bring patients to. The hospitals are overloaded," paramedic Davis Renois said. "The worst [thing] that ever happened was I waited five hours for a bed with a patient with a stroke."
And, it's not like the rest of the country is one disaster, natural or not, from sharing this and other New Orleans' experiences...