Texas Man Waits 19 Hours in Emergency Room, Dies

Published: September 25, 2008

DALLAS – After waiting in Parkland Memorial Hospital’s emergency room for 19 hours, a 58-year-old restaurateur died.

Michael Herrera was taken to the facility Sept. 19 around 4 p.m. after he complained of having severe stomach pains. Herrera was one of 270 people who checked into the emergency room that day.

When doctors were finally able to see him, Herrera had gone into fatal cardiac arrest. Paramedics tried to revive him; however, it was too late.

Doctors, patients and hospital staff are concerned with the overcrowding of hospital emergency rooms. A 2004 report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said that the average patient spent 3.3 hours in the emergency room; however, nearly 400,000 patients waited for more than 24 hours.

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