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Can I sue a hospital for medical coverage (or period) if they send me home and I have my child at home two hours later?

Jefferson City, MO |

I was sent home from my hospital after a nurse noted that I was six weeks early, but later checked me and said " Oh my God! Her water bag is paper thin." My contractions were 2-3 minutes apart when I first came in. They gave me three shots which slowed my contracttions down to 30 min. apart. When I was discharged, they gave me a pill to take once I got home), but my contractions were coming back faster. Two hours later my son was born at home. My work insurance will not cover the delivery because he was born at home, however the hospital is charging me for "delivery services."

Attorney Answers 4


  1. I suggest you contact a medical malpractice attorney in your area ASAP. Your information suggests that you were discharged in active labor, which is a violation of federal law. The statute is known as "emtala" in legal circles, so make sure the attorney you get is familiar with this law. If you can't get a lawyer to assist you because of low damages then file a written complaint at CMS.gov with all the details ans ask them to investigate an emtala violation for sending you home in active labor. The hospital will want to make you happy as part of resolving that complaint. Good luck to you and your new baby.

    This response does not create an attorney-client relationship and is provided after receipt of very limited information. For this reason it is not a substitute for a formal consultation with an attorney in your jurisdiction who has been retained and has been provided all of the relevant information. The author of the related question is strongly encouraged to obtain such a formal consultation prior to making any final decision about how or if to proceed with a legal matter. As there are time deadlines that apply to all legal actions, the question's author is encouraged to seek such consultation as soon as practicable.


  2. Are both you and your child okay? If so, then your question is a billing one. I would contact the insurance company or both the hospital risk manager and the billing office if you are not insured.


  3. You may have a claim and a lot will depend upon whether you or your baby suffered any damages. You may also have been the victim of patient dumping in violation of EMTALA.

    This answer is provided as a public service for informational purposes only. Providing this information does not create an attorney-client relationship. As with all legal matters, you should contact an experienced attorney in your geographical area to discuss the law specific to your state. For more information, see www.hendricksonlaw.com.


  4. Have a local attorney negotiate down the bill.

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