Obscene hospital bills

In early July I tripped on a curb and fell in the street. Dear Juneau — all sorts of people stopped shortly to help. They called the ambulance and my two daughters, all of whom showed up quickly. I was taken to the hospital’s ER and lay on the gurney for several hours, as the only physician on call that Sunday had, as they said, “12 rooms of patients.” I was seen, had six stitches in my forehead, and after a long wait, was seen by a pleasant doctor. There was also an MRI as well as a plain x-ray. Discharged in the late afternoon, my daughter took me home.

 

I think you can see why I was staggered to receive a bill this past week for $4,000. Surely there was a mistake — no, Medicare was billed and paid the vast amount owing. I asked for details — I was told by Bartlett’s finance department the cost of using the ER (no separate room, just the ER itself) was $800 and the physician charge was $1,300. That is obscene. At a time when many are howling about the cost of government, how can Medicare be billed for obscene amounts?

Something is badly wrong.

Thank you for listening.

Dee Longenbaugh

Juneau

CONTACT US

  • Switchboard: 907-586-3740
  • Circulation and Delivery: 907-586-3740
  • Newsroom Fax: 907-586-9097
  • Business Fax: 907-586-9097
  • Accounts Receivable: 907-523-2230
  • View the Staff Directory
  • or Send feedback

ADVERTISING

SUBSCRIBER SERVICES

SOCIAL NETWORKING

 

More

‘Me Too’ movement relevant to Alaska

With all the charges of sexual assault and sexual harassment by powerful men in the news recently, CNN News presented an excellent program on the... Read more

Walker and Kelly: If you want to be leaders, show us a balanced budget

I have been following the Juneau Empire editorials on the state budget. Gov. Bill Walker says we need to tax the public to balance the... Read more