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Sat Jun 30, 2018, 05:14 PM

hospital charges $18836 to treat baby with bottle and nap

https://nypost.com/2018/06/29/hospital-charges-18000-to-treat-baby-with-a-bottle-and-a-nap/

Vox.com reported that a family from South Korea was visiting the city in 2016 when their infant son fell off a hotel bed and hit his head. The baby reportedly never lost consciousness but was crying hysterically. So out of an abundance of caution, the family took him to Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital, the outlet reported.

Doctors quickly determined that 8-month-old Park Jeong-whan was fine. The family told the news site that the baby had some formula, took a little snooze and they got on with their vacation.

Two years later, the family said, they were handed the bill: $18,836.

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The report pointed out that the family was charged more than $15,000 for “trauma activation.”

The fee, according to the report, is due to the hospital’s response to a potentially serious visit. These charges can range from $1,000 to $50,000, according to the report. One expert likened the charge to “the Wild West.”

Hospitals defend the charge by essentially saying it costs money to keep a good response team on hand.


“We are the trauma center for a very large, very densely populated area. We deal with so many traumas in this city — car accidents, mass shootings, multiple vehicle collisions,” a hospital spokesman told Vox. “It’s expensive to prepare for that.”

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Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Sat Jun 30, 2018, 05:20 PM

1. I am not surprised a bit.

Hospitals charge you for a box of Kleenex if you use only one. They charge huge fees for ambulance service too. A few years ago a Swedish foreign exchange student was bitten by a snake in CA and went to the hospital. He was charged $250,000. Fortunately, before he came to the US he bought extra health insurance for the trip. Everyone he knew in Sweden was astonished at the ridiculous health care system in this country.

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Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Sat Jun 30, 2018, 05:44 PM

2. Another Downside of our For-Profit Healthcare System

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Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Sat Jun 30, 2018, 05:46 PM

3. They should have called all the surrounding hospitals

and got a guaranteed price quote before going to the cheapest hospital.

It is just like getting work on your car done.

Isn't it???

/s

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Response to exboyfil (Reply #3)

Sat Jun 30, 2018, 06:01 PM

6. Interesting take, but it sort of depends on the circumstances. Visitors from another country,

may have some language issues, not sure if it is an emergency, but it could be. My inclination would to err on the side of making sure my kid was okay, and not to do a survey. I value the life of my child more than I do a muffler.
The point of the OP was that the cost for what was provided was totally outrageous.
And, yes, I have worked in government procurement at a hospital, so I have some concept.
Not attacking you, but here is a somewhat funny story.
Years ago I was out of state and trying to learn how to flyfish. Due to my ineptness I ended up with a fly hook embedded in my eyelid on the backswing. I knew it was not life endangering, but all I had at the reantal cabin was a steaknife. So....I went to the local emergency room. I didn't have time or inclination to do price checks. Fortunatley (I had great insurance, but I was not a Korean tourist.)



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Response to dameatball (Reply #6)

Sat Jun 30, 2018, 06:08 PM

7. exboyfil was being sarcastic

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Response to Demovictory9 (Reply #7)

Sat Jun 30, 2018, 06:11 PM

8. Sorry exboy. Thanks Demo. To make amends the next time I hook my eyelid with a fly

I will go ahead and use the steaknife….)))… My bad.

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Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Sat Jun 30, 2018, 05:52 PM

4. "We deal with so many traumas in this city -- car accidents, mass shootings"

And those people don’t have insurance so we have to gouge who we can gouge and bankrupt the rest along the way.

They left that part off.

Single payer now.

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Response to Hassin Bin Sober (Reply #4)

Sat Jun 30, 2018, 06:20 PM

9. Good point. nt

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Response to Hassin Bin Sober (Reply #4)

Sat Jun 30, 2018, 09:04 PM

10. In other words, they are a preferred medical facility and get most of the business and staff for it.

.

It's not by accident a hospital is a trauma center. They do it because it is lucrative.

Since they are busy, at all hours of the night, it's like a 24-hour CVS or Wal*Mart, staffed for business.


It would be one thing if they were a smaller regional facility and had to keep people around in the off-chance there was some emergency. These urban trauma centers are the focal points in the city and are busy institutions. There is no need to pay for that. The doctors either want a job or they can try to get residency at another facility.

.

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Response to TheBlackAdder (Reply #10)

Sat Jun 30, 2018, 09:10 PM

11. Actually being a Trauma center is not lucrative

They are money pits. The majority of patients involved in trauma are not insured.
I expect that this baby was given more than a bottle.

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Response to Horse with no Name (Reply #11)

Sat Jun 30, 2018, 09:32 PM

12. Most are EDU facilities and they do receive grants and funding for indigent care.

.

There was an explosion of non-teaching hospitals converting to Level III and IV centers to attract business.

Since the local and regional governments direct the need for these facilities, they do fund them. Back a few years ago, the purse strings were closed a bit, which caused a contraction in trauma centers, this was exacerbated by the influx of hospitals wanting a trauma designation. Many regionals started up Tier II, III and lower IV facilities which cut into the margins of the established Tier I & II centers. But most of that shit settle down about 10 years ago.

It's the same thing we're seeing now, where every other block quick-care emergency facilities are opening to siphon away hospital business--promising lower fees, but having used them, they provide just adequate care with little savings. It's actually cheaper to go to your PCP or other doctor's office and perform an intake there. These places are cutting into hospital business, however, I am noticing many are sprouting up and there are very few cars in their parking lots, and their waiting rooms are empty.

.

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Response to TheBlackAdder (Reply #12)

Sat Jun 30, 2018, 09:49 PM

13. A doctor friend of mine had her family practice group purchased by a hospital group.

On paper it was initially lucrative. Then the pressure to admit more people to the hospital got to be too much. Then she had a couple kids and time off was a problem for her hospital masters.

She quit and is now doing some consulting type job.

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Response to Hassin Bin Sober (Reply #13)

Sun Jul 1, 2018, 11:03 AM

14. That prevalent in NJ too. Hospital groups or doctors for their own groups and consolidate others.

.

It's getting harder and harder to find independent physician practices anymore. Many want to offload the regulatory and paperwork demands of the office. Others have outmoded technology that can not keep up with current regulatory and filing demands. MY current provider and the past two were consumed by these types of organizations. I just got a flyer in the mail, suggesting that I change my PCP from the one our family currently goes to, to another that they bought and is five minutes closer to our house. How is that for loyalty? You have a family of 5, with one PCP, and the doctor's group is sending out fliers to patients suggesting that they can switch providers to another office in the same group.

I used to work in IT for a regional Philadelphia HMO, and that industry has job hoppers from other insurance companies, since it is a relatively niche industry. At lunch, a group were talking about the different scams their prior employers would pull on client patients and doctors offices. The main scam, across the industry is as follows:

A client-patient would submit a claim to the HMO or Medical Insurance Company, they would receive the claim and update their database that they received it, then shred the claim. They would wait until the client-patient resubmitted the claim a second time or possibly even a third time. This delayed the payout to the person. Patients would almost always follow-up on the reimbursement, since they are a single person.

A doctor's office would mail in their claim and they would perform a similar thing, except, they would shred it the first two times and only process them on the third submission. Not only would this delay the payment, but the hopes were that the doctor's office had sloppy claims administrators and would drop the ball on the claim. With the advent of electronic filing, this had been pretty much curtailed, but those offices who still insist on submitting manual paperwork to an insurance company keep getting screwed. I believe that the government mandates electronic filing for providers now, for Medicare and Medicaid.

.

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Response to TheBlackAdder (Reply #14)

Sun Jul 1, 2018, 12:26 PM

15. I'm still amazed at people who say Medicare doctors are hard to find.

Maybe I’m just used to being in a relatively affluent suburb.

When my parent’s doctor left the group he sent all kinds of fliers and marketing material to win them over. It always seemed to me being elderly with a handful of chronic conditions made you a cash cow. Maybe having a great retiree supplemental helped.

They switched because they really liked Doctor Shreenevas. Even though he moved in to Chicago from our near suburb. It’s funny, when he took over the neighborhood practice I grew up in, my parents were a bit nervous about an “Indian”. After a few years they absolutely adored the man. I did too. He was really kind to my parents.

Your story doesn’t surprise me at all. I’ve always suspected as much. God only knows how much I’ve over paid or neglected to collect rebates or refunds on everything from medical care to work materials. People are busy.

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Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Sat Jun 30, 2018, 05:59 PM

5. Another Downside of our For-Profit Healthcare System

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