A woman candidly discusses why it is important to demand an itemized bill for any service you are provided at a hospital.
Healthcare in the US continues to be an expensive affair, but it is not an expense we can forego. Hospital bills turn out to be quite a lot, especially in the case of childbirth or other major procedures. In such situations, it is crucial that one stays aware of what they are paying for. There is always a good chance that hospitals end up overcharging customers on their bills. Jess Tatem (@jess.tatem) shared a video highlighting her experience with being overcharged on a hospital bill after giving birth.
The video has amassed 1.1 million views on the platform, along with 510 comments. She shares how her experience was a sign for others to get an itemized hospital bill. Tatum says, "I was charged for 40 tubs of witch hazel pads when I gave birth." But in reality, she only ended up using one of them. Somehow, the hospital felt justified charging her for 40 of them, bringing the bill up to two grand.
Each tub is also absurdly overpriced, being $61 each, which led to such a high amount in the end. She concludes the video by stating two tips for her viewers: "One: bring your own witch hazel pads. Two: check your bills." Other people on the platform also seemed to face the same problem whenever they went to the hospital and shared their own incidents in the comments section. @r.r1022 said, "I was charged $200 a day for going to the nursery. The nursery was closed and she never left the room."
Another individual, @mamastiredaf, commented, "I was charged for a pregnancy test, and they knew I had had a hysterectomy." @ac_ccccc expressed, "The ER I went to wouldn't send me an itemized bill; when I asked, it was just another statement. I told them I ain't paying until it's itemized." @ruthlesslibrarian highlighted, "More expensive than a hotel minibar. They need to start putting prices on things in the room."
A few months back, Annie Muscato (@afmuscato) shared a similar experience that she had after giving birth to her second baby. She starts the video by saying, "Today's unsolicited life hack is going to be about medical bills." Muscato got to know about asking for an itemized list from a random debt collector. Just like Tatem, she also got an unusually high medical bill, which shocked her. So, she decided to take it up with the hospital, pointing out how she did not get an epidural but had been charged for one.
However, the people from the billing department insisted that she got one and tried to get her to pay for it. Muscato says, "I clearly was not going to pay for it because I did not, in fact, receive an epidural." So, she paid for everything except the epidural, which got the matter escalated to debt collection. A debt collector called her and informed her that she owed money for the epidural.
When she told her about how she had been incorrectly billed, the debt collector calmly told her how this was something that happened frequently. She followed the woman's advice to request her full medical record, and it fixed the problem quickly. She was quite shocked and said, "They removed the charge within hours!" Muscato made use of the advice on many other occasions and it worked for her.