On Dec. 19, my wife went to the emergency room in Jupiter, Fla., and was diagnosed with a blood clot in her leg.
She was admitted at 6 p.m. and discharged 19 hours later. On Dec. 30, I received a notice that included the itemized costs for the care she received, a total of $18,744.90. It included an account summary showing a balance due of $3,781.01 after insurance payments/adjustments of $14,963.89. There was a form to fill out and return, with no payment due yet. (Gulp.)
I am writing this to show the results of an actual experience with medical expenses in just 19 hours. I am not questioning the charges. I know absolutely nothing about how they were determined, although they do seem high to me.
If this had been someone without insurance, I assume the government (us) would pay the total bill. That is exactly what I think President Barack Obama has been trying to tell us. My hope is that members of Congress will take a hard look at the health care law before just repealing it for political gain. I am absolutely certain it contains opportunities that will benefit everyone. Perhaps Congress can actually clear away the fog it wrought in the 2,700 pages. A hundred pages ought to be more than enough to say what needs saying. Anyone trying to make sense out of the current mess would have trouble deciding whether he was afoot or on horseback.