About Us Contact Us Privacy Policy
© GOOD Worldwide Inc. All Rights Reserved.

A woman being charged $8K for an ER visit despite being insured sparks discussion on insurance

She learned that the insurance from her husband's job didn't cover any of the expenses of her ER visit.

A woman being charged $8K for an ER visit despite being insured sparks discussion on insurance
Sick woman lying on bed in ICU during Pandemic - stock photo/Getty Images

Access to medical care is a basic human right in many countries, but sadly, America isn't one of them. Many people who do not have health insurance are afraid to get medical care for the fear of being handed huge bills, and as an Imgur user said, those who had health insurance weren't much better off either. One person, who suffered a bad fall and was thought to have broken an arm, had visited the ER on the assumption that the healthcare insurance via her husband’s new job would cover it. Aware of the huge medical bills, she was relieved at the thought of the health insurance covering the amount for treatment but it wasn't to be. She was handed a bill of $8000 and she found out her arm wasn't even broken. The ER said the X-rays, a painkiller pill, and a bandage had come to $10,000. Many other Imgur users also empathized with her having experienced similar issues with health insurance and medical care.



She shared a meme about it and wrote about the incident. "I can't express how overjoyed we were to finally have 'real' health insurance, it felt like we had a major potential concern covered now," wrote the person. "Then I took a really bad fall. So bad it felt for sure like I had broken my arm. Literally couldn't stop crying from the pain of it even during the couple of hours we spent in the ER. They did two x-rays, confirmed it wasn't broken, gave me an ibuprofen (an individual pill, not a prescription), an ace bandage, and sent me home," she added.



She assumed the health insurance would cover a major part of it but that wasn't the case. "We figured there would be a co-pay of some sort, but receiving a bill for $8k was a very unwelcome shock. Apparently, the ER had charged $10k, or insurance felt like paying roughly $800ish, and then the ER deigned to lower the remaining amount due for us to pay to $8k. So now I'm crying for other reasons. We've been trying to call our insurance but their hours of operation are crap and they keep you on hold forever," she wrote.


The woman felt guilty and blamed herself for expecting the health insurance to cover her bills. "Husband's gone to sleep for the night because he has work tomorrow but I'm so upset I can't sleep. This feels like it's all my fault. I guess somehow I should have known my arm wasn't broken and not had us go to the ER," she wrote, before laying bare the state of health insurance in the country. "I guess I should have known better than to trust our health insurance was worth a damn. Maybe I should have known better than to be optimistic about anything at all when I'm an American and I know what our country is currently like at the moment. I just... I don't know. It felt like a weight of worry had been lifted, only to come crushing back down. I feel like I just want to curl up and disappear," she concluded. The original poster was flooded with positive messages and suggestions on what to do next. Many urged her to check the hospital policies and also told her to ask for an itemized bill. "These charges are absolutely ridiculous," she added in response to the comments.



One of the videos suggested that the majority of hospitals can forgive the medical debt of families without incomes large enough to cover their medical expenses. The video showed a person guiding users to check the hospital policy to know their eligibility based on income. The person also runs a website that helps people do the work for them to ease their financial crisis. "We enforce the hospital’s Charity Care policies. In order for hospitals to keep their nonprofit status, they have to have programs in place that aid families without incomes large enough to cover their medical expenses, called Charity Care. First, we check a patient’s eligibility. We then work through a more extensive application with the patient and, reach out to the hospitals, advocating for the family and reinforcing that the hospital waives the debt it is legally responsible for," read the website's description.

More Stories on Scoop