by Jeff Davis
Ever wonder why health care in this country has become so murderously expensive? Well, one reason is Marco Antonio Fuentes. The Fresno Bee reports: “Doctors say Marco Antonio Fuentes is well enough to go home today. At last… Fuentes has spent 374 days at Community Regional Medical Center, the longest uninterrupted stay by a patient at the Fresno acute-care hospital, according to staff recollection. Doctors struggled to keep him alive since Fuentes was admitted to the hospital Dec. 26, 2010, with an excruciating belly ache.”
“Fuentes’ abdomen was full of infection.” [That he brought with him from Mexico.] “Surgeons could do little that first day but drain the abscesses and sew him up, said physician assistant Neydi Salaverri-Edmonds. Necrotizing pancreatitis, an infection of the pancreas, had eaten away tissues, including his intestines, she said. Doctors suspect Fuentes, 35, had gallstones that developed into a gallbladder infection, which was left untreated and progressed.”
“The average length of hospital stay for uncomplicated pancreatitis is about two weeks, with a complicated case taking as many as 45 to 65 days, according to the Society for Surgery of the Alimentary Tract. But Fuentes’ case was far from uncomplicated. Fuentes had 12 surgeries overseen by three trauma physicians — Drs. Jim Davis, Ricard Townsend and Kunjan Bhakta. The holes in his intestines allowed bile and feces to escape into his abdomen and he had blood infections and blood clots in his lungs that were life-threatening. For 11 months and two weeks, he was too ill to eat food or have water. He was fed intravenously. The open wound in his stomach needed daily dressing changes.”
“Fuentes, an illegal immigrant from Mexico, has no health insurance. On Tuesday, the final cost of Fuentes’ care was not available. Much of it will be taken on by the hospital as charity care. Last year, for all patients, the hospital provided $100 million on charity care, according to hospital spokeswoman Mary Lisa Russell.”
Now multiply this one single hospital in California by tens of thousands of other illegal aliens, who need complex expensive surgeries that their home country of Mexico won’t provide them. This is why a ride in an ambulance now costs $1000, why a visit to the emergency room costs $1200, and why if you miss one payment they turn your bill over to a collection agency immediately.
We have an estimated 20 to 30 million illegal aliens in this country (no one really knows how many) using the emergency rooms as their primary health care. The result is that we are footing billions of dollars’ worth of medical bills for criminals who don’t pay.
Why was this problem not brought up even once in any of the Republican debates? The overall cost of illegal aliens to the state of California is $13.1 billion per year. If all those Third Worlders were deported, the state of California would be able to balance its budget. I’m sure a large majority of Californians would like to see that happen rather than see their taxes and fees raised, but keeping the illegal aliens here is a major goal of the Democrats (and it appears to be a secret goal of most Republican politicians too).