It’s hard to be shocked by American health care bills, but once in a while, one is still SO insane that it’s jaw dropping.
A family from South Korea was visiting San Francisco two years ago, and their eight-month-old infant accidentally fell off the bed in the hotel room and hit his head. He wouldn’t stop crying, so they called 911 and an ambulance took them to the hospital.
The doctors quickly figured out that the baby was fine. He took a quick nap in his mother’s arms, they gave him a bottle of formula, and he was discharged a few hours later. The entire hospital visit took just over three hours.
And it took two years for the hospital to track down the family, but they just sent them the bill . . . for $18,836.
Almost all of that is a $15,000 “trauma fee” . . . that’s what the hospital charges when it needs to bring together a team for a potentially serious injury in the ER.
The family is working with a patient advocate to try to negotiate the bill . . . since it seems like JUST a little too much to pay for a quick exam, a nap, and a bottle of formula.