President Biden’s ongoing border crisis left an Arizona hospital holding the bag for $20 million in unpaid bills racked up by migrants who needed treatment – including expensive surgery and intensive care – in the last six months only.
Dr. Bob Transchel, president and CEO of Yuma Regional Medical Center, said Friday that neither the federal nor state governments were willing to help his 406-bed nonprofit facility.
“There is no source of payment for these people,” Transchel told PKB News. “Everyone is friendly and they lend a sympathetic ear, but no one is offering a source of payment for these people. It’s an unsustainable business model.
Transchel said “everyone who walks through our door will receive the same level of care as anyone else,” adding that migrants “come in who need dialysis, who need heart surgery, who have need a cardiac catheterization”.
“We have had women who have come to our birthing unit who have delivered infants who need to be in neonatal intensive care, sometimes for months,” he said.
Some migrants need treatment for traumatic injuries sustained while hiking across the border, Transchel said.
“A lot of it, though – interestingly – is really complications from chronic conditions that hadn’t been treated before,” he added.
Transchel said that in more than a year, the cost of processing migrants at Yuma Regional had “essentially doubled, and it will continue to rise”.
“We operate with a margin of 2 to 3% per year. This year is not looking very good from a financial point of view and a lot of it is due to these uncompensated costs,” he said.
Transchel’s comments came as Customs and Border Protection sources told PKB News that overstretched officers had recorded more than 575,000 migrant encounters along the southwestern border since Oct. beginning of fiscal year 2023.
Of that number, more than 397,000 were released to the United States to seek asylum while nearly 178,000 were deported under the pandemic-related public health policy known as Title 42, indicated the sources.
The U.S. Supreme Court is weighing the future of Title 42 after a federal judge ruled against it last month, and officials have warned a massive wave of migrants will cross the border if the policy is overturned .
A decision could fall next week.
Meanwhile, disturbing photos showed migrants huddled in sleeping bags and under blankets Friday morning on the sidewalk outside a church in El Paso, Texas, where overnight temperatures plunged to 18 degrees as a historic winter storm froze huge portions of the United States before Christmas weekend.
The Church of the Sacred Heart runs a shelter that has been filled to capacity as El Paso grapples with a crisis that led Mayor Oscar Leeser to declare a state of emergency on Saturday and resume dispatch of buses full of migrants in New York.
But illegal immigrants who haven’t been processed by CBP and haven’t been issued paperwork aren’t allowed into the city’s shelters, leading many to risk freezing to death while lying in the cold. outdoors.
CBP has issued warnings to migrants in English and Spanish on his extremely cold weather Twitter page.
“Do not risk your life or that of your loved one trying to cross the Rio Grande or the desert. Stay home or stay in a safe shelter and avoid tragedy,” one message read.
Daily statistics released online Friday by the city of El Paso showed that 937 migrants had been released in the city, all were reportedly sent to shelters and none were homeless after the city opened its convention center as a temporary shelter.
However, a Post photographer captured migrants who had slept outside the city’s Sacred Heart Church on Thursday night, wrapped in blankets and sleeping bags against the cold.
Additionally, the city said CBP has recorded 1,837 encounters with migrants and has 2,374 migrants in custody.