5 Horror Stories About the Cost of Health Care Even When You Have Insurance

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    eridani
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    https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/xgq5jw/surprise-medical-bill-stories-and-private-health-care-insurance

    My husband and I flew to California to visit my parents and planned to drive their car back up with all my childhood belongings in it. As I was driving through Nevada, the car hit a patch of black ice and flipped over into a ravine. My spine broke on impact. (My husband was OK, aside from breaking his glasses.)

    I was taken to a tiny hospital in Ely, where I was immediately pumped full of drugs and sent to get X-rays. Since the doctor couldn’t tell whether the break was stable or not from the X-rays, the doctor gave my shaken husband the choice of flying me to Salt Lake City or Las Vegas for an MRI, since the test, which would have been a four-hour drive. We flew to Las Vegas within an hour, where I had numerous tests done.

    At some point in my morphine haze, a lady came through to explain my insurance while my husband was out getting new glasses. None of this registered because of the medication I was on.

    Imagine our surprise when we got back home to a $60,000 bill. We knew it would be a lot, but not that much. Our insurance, Blue Cross Blue Shield, decided that the plane trip was “elective,” saying that I could have taken the four-hour ground ambulance ride. We appealed that decision four times, during which the ER doctor clarified that the air ambulance was medically necessary–which was why they never offered a ground ambulance as a choice. While the appeals were happening, the bill gathered interest and grew to $75,000 for just the air ambulance—including the exams and four days in the hospital, the debt was far over $75,000. All four appeals were denied. We decided declaring bankruptcy was our only option.

    Jesus: Hey, Dad? God: Yes, Son? Jesus: Western civilization followed me home. Can I keep it? God: Certainly not! And put it down this minute--you don't know where it's been! Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction

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