<em>Patt Morrison</em> is known for its innovative discussions of local politics and culture, as well as its presentation of the effects of national and world news on Southern California.
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How to pay less at the ER




Former inmates often end up relying on county clinics and emergency rooms for health care.
Former inmates often end up relying on county clinics and emergency rooms for health care.
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

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No one wants to go, or expects to go, but sometimes your only choice for medical treatment is the Emergency Room. The anxiety and powerlessness many feel about the costs associated with treatment at the ER can be overwhelming. There are some simple and important things to know about what to do if you get socked with an enormous bill for treatment (does aspirin really cost that much?). For starters, don’t go. The most common reason people go to the ER for non life threatening injuries is to treat sprains, superficial injuries, and upper respiratory infections. An urgent care center can take care of all these issues faster and cheaper. But if you do find yourself at the ER, you best listen to Patt. It could hurt if you don’t.

Guest:

Lesley Alderman, Business Day 'Patient Money' columnist for The New York Times