Economists are saying free-standing emergency rooms grew too fast in Texas and may not always be the lower-cost option for patients, according to an article on the Fierce Healthcare website.
The building of these 24-hour facilities boomed due to a 2009 Texas law that allowed the establishment of ERs independent of hospitals.
Texas had only a handful of free-standing ERs in 2000. Now there are more than 200 across the state.
The cost of care has increased as their numbers grow. The mean cost of a visit at a free-standing ER was $2,199 in 2015, compared to $2,259 at a hospital ER.
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