Everyone probably has a story like this one or will have one eventually. At midnight Saturday several weeks ago, my son, while cutting a tie-wrap with a pocket knife, delivers a small cut to himself on the fatty part of the hand beneath the thumb (an unsafe act for sure, but not the topic here). With five children and at least a dozen trips to the emergency room in the past 28 years, it was obvious he needed two or three stitches to close the wound. So what happens next?
We go to the nearest hospital emergency room that advertises that we should insist on their facility. Upon our arriving at the emergency room, the admission representative, the nurse and the doctor all question how the injury occurred. After two hours and two attempts to “glue” the small cut closed, my son is discharged.
The next day the wound opens up and we spend the next six days keeping the wound closed with butterfly Band-Aids and tape. A letter is sent with pictures attached to the doctor group administrator about the poor decision and care concerning the wound. There was no response by mail, email or phone from the doctor group administrator or his staff.
We received a bill from the hospital for $1,636.58, and a “doctor” bill for $1,096. The doctor bill is filed to the insurance company under the father’s name and birth date instead of the son’s. The insurance company refused to process the claim until they have an “injury report.” But the doctor’s group refuses to send a corrected claim to the insurance company until they have a claim refusal letter from said insurance company.
Every one is a winner – the hospital, the doctors, the insurance company, companies that sell supplies, politicians who take money from the health care industry, etc, etc. Everyone is a winner – except for the poor sap who had to go to the hospital.
Oh, and did I mention my insurance premiums tripled last January?