I instructed loved ones: unless I’m knocking on death’s door, do NOT arrange an Emergency Room visit on my behalf. My reasoning? Years as a medical malpractice defense attorney enlightened me. Add: caselaw (written opinions by judges), combined with recent news headlines, deepen my wariness.
Example: NPR presents a true case of medical administrators believing patients personify stupidity; they treat us accordingly. Groom did what grooms do: drank like a fish. Subsequent breathing problems scurried him to the ER as a walk-in. Like most, he signed a consent form without reading it. Buried within the dense language → a clause giving the facility absolute permission to … well … run any test and do dang near anything they pleased, under the guise of potentially helpful.
When the $12,000+ bill arrived, certain line items confirmed the ER’s manager’s status as a determined stranger to integrity. Among the r-u-friggin-kidding-me entries: two bags of saline solution @ $700. As a premier doctor confirmed, the same bags can be secured from Walmart for—wait for it— about $10. Another entry, in excess of $7000, appeared simply because the ER presents as a 24/7 treatment facility.
The groom’s insurance company negotiated the patently obscene bill down to the $4,000 range, leaving the groom on the hook for half that amount. I deduce the ridiculous $7000 entry was among the first sliced by the Bye Felicia sword.
Please, study the linked article; whip out your bullet journal or whatever serves your ToDo notation needs; and, insert → research local Urgent Care facilities and the hours. For what it’s worth, I did this last year. This year, when hubs required emergent care, I drove him to one of the Urgent Care places unearthed by that research. Felt like we walked into a medical mecca staffed by Doctors Welby and Kildare. Read: consummate respect for the patient washed over us. And the reasonable bill did NOT induce heart palpitations.
You. Have. Been. Warned.
Source: NPR: Health News
A $12,460 Hangover Cure? This Groom’s ER Bill Was A Major Headache