Ten miles from the Mexican border sits Yuma Regional Medical, the only hospital within 180 miles. Just imagine the traffic of illegal immigrants trying to find help there. It’s overwhelming, and the hospital is angry enough at the federal government to speak out about the massive debt incurred due to the lack of border security: $22 million just from the last six months of illegal immigrant care with no benefactors in sight. The facility saw an increase of 4,400 more patients last fiscal year compared to previous data recorded. And no plan from the Biden administration to repel the masses when Title 42 finally expires.
Yuma Regional Medical President Dr. Robert Transchel explained the situation: “People always think they’re coming in with coughs and colds, but that’s not really the case.” The good doctor detailed conditions such as heart disease, cardiac catheterization, dialysis, and newborn babies requiring extreme neonatal care for months at a time. Transchel reminds that he and his colleagues are dedicated to treating anyone who comes into their facility for health care, regardless of immigration status and whether they can pay or not. Sure, the feds are sympathetic as they turn their eyes away, apparently waiting for a random miracle to resolve the problem.
“We’ve been able to sustain it up until now — how much longer we can, I don’t know,” Transchel lamented. “It feels terrible, but you know what? Nobody’s listening. There’s no revenue source to help offset these expenses that we’re incurring.”
Bracing for Border Impact
Yuma County has prepared the best it could under the worst possible odds by declaring a state of emergency. This allowed the facility to tap into additional resources, such as the national strategic stockpile of pharmaceuticals. Board of Supervisors Chairman Tony Reyes said this was enacted specifically because Title 42 was on its way out, and the seasonal rise of illness plus the increase in undocumented immigrants would wreak havoc with the surrounding communities’ health care. The 406-bed acute care facility is waving the white flag: “We don’t have the staff, physicians, the nurses, or the space to accommodate the influx that we have,” Transchel stressed.
The Yuma sector is simply getting hammered. The area covers 181,670 square miles, and crossings have spiked more than 2,000%. Jonathan Lines, a Republican on the Yuma County Board of Supervisors, spoke frankly with the press and said it’s common for illegal border crossers to dial 911 to ask for immediate medical assistance.
Lines was at the border in Yuma earlier to witness several ambulances responding to a scene because “people were complaining of medical emergencies. We’ve invited the [Biden] administration to come and look at [the border],” he said. “They’ve never been here, which is ridiculous.”
Yuma has a champion in the Swamp trying to bring attention to the crisis — House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA), who also laid the disaster at the feet of Joe Biden. He slammed the White House for inaction and failing to provide assistance of some kind in the gargantuan $1.7 trillion omnibus spending bill that just passed. As Scalise remarked, “President Biden doesn’t care about that because he knows the solution is closing the border, and he doesn’t want to.” But as Transchel said, “I mean, they’re the ones that are allowing this. They’re the ones that should take responsibility for this.”
Biden has announced that “there are more important things going on” in the United States than the chaos at the border. But the looming financial and humanitarian disaster that the president just dismissed is about to spill over into the country’s interior – with similarly disastrous results. For those Americans whose lives are directly impacted by waves of illegal aliens with nowhere to go, the only hope, perhaps, is that someone at the federal level will finally do something when the border chaos is no longer confined to the border.
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