Last month, I had an unexpected trip to the emergency room. I was pleased how quickly I was taken care of but as I left, I was afraid to see what this was going to cost.
This is what happened. While chopping garlic, I sliced my left index finger, cutting through the nail. I didn’t know how deep. As it started to spurt blood, I quickly wrapped it with a paper towel and left for the ER. I could have gone to my local doctor but when I called, the message said: “in case of emergency, dial 911”. Even though this was urgent, I didn’t need an ambulance. My best option seemed to be to drive to the ER myself.
This is where the phrase, insult to injury applies. The hospital charged nearly $8,000 just for me to walk through the door. Their pharmacy fee was $328 and medical supplies nearly $800. Today I received another bill from the doctor and that was over $1,600. The grand total for my finger came to over $10,000 and that isn’t even with a ring on it.
Let me break this down further. The hospital charged over $1,000 for “medical supplies”; a bandaid and medical-grade superglue. I spent more time being processed as a patient than I did with the nurse practitioner. The majority of the time, I was sitting alone in a room.
My responsibility for the two bills is nearly $900. Insurance said I didn’t meet my deductible but this isn’t my issue. The fees make me feel like a victim of highway robbery.
THIS is one of the biggest problems with our insurance system. How do they justify these costs?
I work part-time, fifteen hours a week and make less than $10 an hour, before taxes. In order to pay this bill, I need to work 107 hours.
I’ve called the hospital, the doctor and my insurance company. I’m just so disgusted.
PS- the medical community should be ashamed of itself.