Using basic economic principles there are two factors involved in pricing. One is cost and the other is value. For the value, what amount of money would you be willing to pay to set your foot right? Does the value change with access, meaning are you willing to pay more for immediate service rather than waiting a few days.
As far as the cost goes and the the 4 hours wai for the X-ray; the equipment and the personnel required to do the X-Ray have to be ready 24 hours per day, the equipment needs to be regularly maintained and the personnel are continually trained. The facility housing the equipment cost 100's per square foot to build and probably around 5 to 10 per square foot to maintain. When the X-ray is completed, qualified people need to read the results and provide reports for your attending doctor. The attending doctor and nurses are also ready 24 hours per day and the examining rooms have their own facility costs. In addition to the direct costs of providing the facility, equipment and personnel, their are the indirect costs for administration, insurance, interest etc.
And yes, come the ‘explanations’. The real reason it cost so much is because of the illegals and those that choose to use the emergency room as a general practicioner’s office, as well as the drunks and drug addicts ‘explaining’ why they need a prescription to get this drug filled because their doctor is out of reach, etc.
Your explanations are reasoned and well-explained, but pointless, and I won’t even go into torts. We all know what the problem is. Realize it.