PLANTATION, Fla. -- While helping his mother clean up her yard after Hurricane Wilma, Tim Swett aggravated a back problem, and he went to look for a doctor.
Swett, 41, got to an emergency room, and he waited five hours before leaving. It was not until he tried another hospital, where teams had been set up to handle minor injuries, that he saw a doctor.
Six days after Hurricane Wilma, more than 1 million people are without power. Many doctors' offices have been closed for a week. That leaves hospitals, now the only source of medical care in some communities, swamped with routine problems.
''You can't get any regular doctors on the phone," Swett said. ''You can't get anything filled."
To ease the crunch, the Federal Emergency Management Agency set up disaster medical assistance teams at four hospitals. The teams are intended to help people with minor injuries, prescription medicine, or those trying to follow up on routine medical care. The services are free.
At Westside Regional Medical Center in Plantation, a team had seen 190 patients, including Swett, by yesterday morning; they had opened on Thursday. The hospital saw double the amount of normal traffic in the days after Wilma hit, said the chief executive, Earl H. Denning.
''They were being overrun," said Bill Wallace, who is commanding a team of 35 doctors, nurses, and others working out of four tents that had been set up in the hospital's parking lot.
Edward Grant, 58, of Lauderdale Lakes, said he would have gone to his regular doctor for treatment of a boil, but the office did not have electricity and was damaged by the storm. On Tuesday, he spent 14 hours in an emergency room at another hospital.
Wilma was the eighth hurricane to strike or pass by Florida in 15 months. The storm killed 21 people in Florida, and 38 overall.
By yesterday afternoon, state officials said that about 2,000 people were still in emergency shelters, most in Palm Beach and Broward counties.