GRAIN VALLEY, MO – In an attempt to boost revenue and cut waiting times, a local Missouri emergency department is beta testing a program that would allow ER patients to purchase theme park-esque “speed passes” for those individuals wanting to bypass long wait times to be seen by a physician. Emergency department director and Six Flags enthusiast Dr. Kim Copanelli answered questions regarding the controversial program during a press conference outside the hospital last Saturday.
“We want to be very clear here,” explained Dr. Copanelli, self-described amusement park addict, “that we are not discriminating speed of care based on a patient’s financial ability to pay for our coveted FlashPasses.
Patients who desire expedited medical care will have a wide variety of exchange methods to choose from if purchasing a FlashPass monetarily is not feasible. For example, revocation of call button privileges, signing a non-liability waiver, taking a janitorial or dish cleaning shift, and BYOME [bring your own medical equipment] are all being considered as possible means to obtain a FlashPass.”
The ED director and rollercoaster aficionado went on to explain that the program was being designed with the help of consultants from Universal Studios, Sea World, and other top national theme parks.
When questioned as to the price of the prospective FlashPasses and other details regarding the program, Dr. Copanelli avoided specifics.
“The exact retail value of the FlashPass has yet to be determined,” said the carnival ride connoisseur and veteran emergency physician. “It is unlikely that FlashPass coupons or Groupon promotions will be released, but monthly specials may be given during certain times of the year, especially during the month of July. I can also say that monthly and yearly Platinum Club FlashPass memberships for frequent flyers, drug seekers, or those who simply see themselves as priority ED customers, are currently on the discussion board.”