Frequently Asked Questions about Emergency Care

Q. I am often confused by the number of bills I receive from one visit to the Emergency Department. Can you please explain them?
. You will receive one bill from the medical center and a separate bill from the Emergency Department physician who provided your care. You will receive additional separate bills from any physicians who performed specialty services, such as x-ray interpretation, EKG (electrocardiogram), pathology tissue examination, and so forth.

Q. Whom should I call if I have concerns about my care or questions about my bill?
. For questions regarding hospital billing, please call the Adventist Health Glendale (AHGL) billing department at (818) 409-8200.

For questions regarding emergency room physician billing, call the AHGL emergency physician billing department at (626) 447-0296.

For questions about radiology procedure and radiology physician billing, call (818) 247-2095.

For questions about anesthesiology billing call (818) 550-0900.

For questions about pathology billing, call (818) 248-9712

Q. Why does it take so long before I can see a doctor in the Emergency Room?
. The Emergency Department is a very busy place that handles multiple patients who need attention all at the same time. Wait time depends on the number of patients and their need for medical attention, including tests and procedures.

Q. Why was another person taken in before me when I got here first?
. Patients are treated based on the severity of their illness or injury. This is called triage. For instance, someone who is having difficulty breathing needs more urgent help than someone who has a cough—even if they've had the cough for three days.

Q. Can I have something to eat or drink while I am waiting?
. The Emergency Room physician or nurse may ask you to refrain from eating or drinking if doing so could impact the results of tests you are having or if they suspect that you might need a diagnostic test or surgery that requires you have no food or liquid in your system.

Q. What health plans do you accept?
. We accept all health plans. Federal law prohibits us from discriminating or delaying treatment based on a patient's ability to pay.

Q. What should I bring with me to the Emergency Department?
. It would be helpful if you could bring the following information with you:

  • Your medical history.
  • The names and dosage of all medications you routinely take.
  • The name and telephone number of your primary physician.
  • For minors: It is important that patients who are minors have a medical consent form, signed by their parent or legal guardian, if that person is not with them.

Q. Why is the Emergency Room so much more expensive than my doctor's office?
. The Emergency Department is a full-service facility with immediate accessibility to all of the medical center's state-of-the-art medical technology, and it provides immediate diagnosis and intervention. A physician's office is a scheduled service and, though it may provide services similar to that of the Emergency Department, it normally does so only over a period of days or weeks.

Q. Why are so many tests ordered?
. The Emergency Department physician will use all available diagnostic tests and technology to evaluate your complaint in order to make an accurate diagnosis and plan of treatment.