Physicians Group Gives Texas a Failing Grade for Access to Emergency Care

Jan 16, 2014

Texas is failing in several categories when it comes to its emergency care environment, at least according to a report card from the American College of Emergency Physicians.   

Based near Dallas, the physicians group grades states each year on their emergency care environment.

This year, Texas gets an F, ranking 47th in the nation, for access to emergency care.

"It had one of the worst rates of health insurance both for adults and children. Also, Medicaid pays so low in Texas to the primary care physicians that many of them are not are not comfortable taking it and are not attracted to taking care of that population," says Dr. Alex Rosenau, president of the American College of American Physicians.

Texas state lawmakers set the Medicaid reimbursement rate. Stephanie Goodman with the Texas Health and Human Services Commission said in an email that Texas hospitals get billions of dollars in supplemental payments to care for Medicaid patients and the uninsured. She also says Medicaid programs are enabling the state to start up innovative projects that reduce the need for expensive emergency room care.  

Overall, the physicians group ranks Washington D.C. (though not a state) highest and Wyoming the worst. It gives Texas an A on medical liability environment and a C for disaster preparedness.