man charged $9,000 for emergency room visit for a cut on his finger
Posted in the Mason Forum
#1 Aug 26, 2014
New Jersey man Baer Hanusz-Rajkowski hit his middle finger with a hammer. Ouch! So he headed to the emergency room to make sure he did not need any stitches and would not get tetanus. He did not need any stitches, thankfully and received a tetanus shot. He was also not given an X-ray. All fairly routine, right? Well when the bill came, he was shocked!
Bayonne Medical Center, ER charged Rajkowski $9,000 for the visit. Even with insurance, he was left with a tab of thousands. Exuberant costs involved with ER visits have had an impact on the health insurance marketplace. Dr. Mark Spektor, who is the President and CEO of Bayonne Medical Center said that the high bill was the fault of Rajkowski’s insurance company, United Healthcare.
According to the Washington Post, the average ER visit costs 40 percent more than a month’s rent. With the hefty fees associated with an ER visit, we decided to take a closer look to see what factors may be contributing to it.
Keeping Non-Emergencies Out of The ER
A Rand Corp. study last year found that we spend $4.4 billion annually on people who use the ER for routine, non-urgent care. Researchers said that “nearly 20 percent of all emergency room visits in the U.S. involve minor infections, strains and fractures.” The misuse of ER rooms is something states and insurers both are trying to combat.
$4.4 billion annually on people who use the ER for routine, non-urgent care
Forbes reports that “to crack down on “frequent flyers”, as patients who repeatedly use the ER are known, some states have adopted aggressive measures. Washington state is trying to limit its Medicaid recipients to three non-urgent emergency room visits per year. After that, they have to pay for the visits out of their own pockets. A judge blocked implementation of the plan last week but policy makers say they’ll find a legal way to do it. Florida is tackling the problem by seeking to charge Medicaid patients $100 each time they use the ER for routine care.”
Whether or not these efforts will curtail the cost involved with ER room visits as yet to been shown. Ultimately, your best bet is to have proper health insurance coverage. Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) it is now the law to be insured. Many health care experts believe that this may help to reduce the high fees with ER visits as well.
Contact Suchanek Partners today to see how you can protect yourself or employees from exuberant health care costs.
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