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Dangerous Smuggling Strains Arizona Hospitals

Regional officials attended the Binational Health Week kick-off in Nogales, Mexico.
Ted Robbins, NPR
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Regional officials attended the Binational Health Week kick-off in Nogales, Mexico.
Dixie Nixon of the UMC Foundation inspects some of the new equipment installed in Nogales, Sonora, Mexico.
Ted Robbins, NPR /
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Dixie Nixon of the UMC Foundation inspects some of the new equipment installed in Nogales, Sonora, Mexico.

As the U.S. government tightens security along the border with Mexico, nearby hospitals are seeing an increasing number of serious injuries in their emergency rooms.

Many uninsured illegal immigrants cannot afford to pay for this medical care, so more hospitals are forced to foot the bill.

From smugglers' use of unsafe, overcrowded vehicles to immigrants who can't -- or won't -- pay for treatment, medical resources along the border are being strained. Amid the argument over who should pay, hospitals on both sides of the border are looking for answers.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

As supervising editor for Arts and Culture at NPR based at NPR West in Culver City, Ted Robbins plans coverage across NPR shows and online, focusing on TV at a time when there's never been so much content. He thinks "arts and culture" encompasses a lot of human creativity — from traditional museum offerings to popular culture, and out-of-the-way people and events.