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Which Was Worse: The Bachelor Party Hangover Or The Hangover From The ER Bill?

Feb 2020

Here is another tale of a patient incurring a surprise bill after their visit to an ER. In this case, it wasn’t an emergency situation and was something that the patient could have priced out using price comparison tools. Medxoom’s proprietary price comparison tool could have been used to show the patient pricing within their network for the service they needed at that time.

From Kaiser Health News:

That resulted in an even bigger headache: a medical bill that was initially $12,460, all told. That was more than twice the cost of their wedding.

Fischer’s case is a sobering illustration of America’s health care system. With few constraints on how emergency rooms set prices, hospital systems have jacked up rates and coded patient visits as being more complex than previously, which increases the payments they receive from insurance plans. The result: ER services have some of the fastest-growing prices in the health care system.

Many health economists think free-standing ER facilities, like the one Fischer visited — which are banned in many states but thriving in Colorado — are particularly culpable. While such ERs maintain they can’t survive on rates paid by Medicare and Medicaid, data suggests they are profit-seeking engines built primarily in high-income ZIP codes.”

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