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Why are ER's Closing?

A study in this week's Journal of the American Medical Association states that 30 percent of emergency rooms have closed across the country - though patient visits to the ER have increased by 35 percent over the last 20 years.

According to HealthDay, "Market forces, such as competition and dwindling profits, explain most of the closings, said the researchers, who originally set out to study increasing reports of ER overcrowding."

Emergency rooms must see all patients, regardless of their ability to pay. Hospitals - especially those in urban areas that cater to those below the poverty line - simply aren't making enough money. 

What do you think of this news? We want to hear from you! What does this mean for patients now? And how will this worsen when the health care law is enacted?

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AMSA On Call is the official blog of the American Medical Student Association. Join us as we discuss the hottest issues in health care. 

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