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American Academy of Emergency Medicine

EMTALA Now Extends to Off-Campus Outpatient Departments

The new PPS extends application of EMTALA-the rule governing hospitals' obligation to provide emergency services-to hospital outpatient departments off-campus from the main hospital facility. The offsite outpatient department must have protocols in place for handling an individual who requests emergency services. The offsite department is expected to screen or stabilize the patient within its capability and, when necessary, move the individual to the main hospital or make an appropriate transfer to another hospital. The hospital is not expected to have emergency department staff or capabilities at these off-campus sites. This provision takes effect about six months from now.

Source: AHA News Now, April 3, 2000