Kidney stones are not cheap.Posted: December 16, 2009
Many of you know that I had a visit from Mr. Stone about a week and a half ago. He stopped by to see me on a Sunday afternoon. I got to the hospital about 4. I was home, heavily medicated by about 9:30 that evening.
Yesterday and today brought envelopes from my insurance company and the hospital.
The insurer and the hospital agree that the total charges for my visit were nearly $3500. Keep in mind, I was in the building less than 6 hours. About ninety minutes of that time was spent in the waiting room, curled up like a boiled shrimp and praying for a stone column to fall and put me out of my misery.
Actually, that isn’t really fair. I didn’t just curl up like a boiled shrimp and pray for death. I also read a copy of Highlights magazine. I learned from reading it that it is rude to wail, no matter how much agony I am in. Yeah, you gotta love Highlights.
You know, if you’re going to get three grand out of this, hospital, perhaps you could invest in something people over eight enjoy reading?
My Insurance statement is odd. It says the hospital charges are $3500. Then there is a column that says “Amount you don’t owe”. That is different from the next column, the amount the company is going to pay. The final column is what my insurer says I will be paying for this event…about $500, on top of the $150 I paid the hospital the day of Mr. Stone’s visit.
Pretty much what happened is that the insurer took what the hospital was charging, decided neither of us would pay about half of that amount. Then, despite the fact that I’ve handed over boat loads of money to them this year (in addition to what they get from my employer) I still have to pay.
I have no idea why I don’t have to pay anything in the “Amount you don’t owe” column. Perhaps if I don’t owe it, and they don’t owe it, we need to not discuss it. Writing it down and mailing it around doesn’t seem like a good idea to me. It is sort of like Nixon taping himself talking about Watergate.
I also don’t know why I’m paying the amount that I supposedly do owe. That is what I pay the insurer to do for me. Obviously that was just a fantasy.
If my insurance company is not going to pay for me to be treated, why are we maintaining the roles we have. I am effective at getting sick, but they are ineffective at paying for me getting sick. Maybe the solution is a reversal.
The insurance company can give me money. Then, when they get sick, I will tell them I am just not into paying their bill. Maybe I’ll be nice about it and tell them I just am a little short of cash and need them to pitch in. I won’t tell them that I will have bought a Jeep with the money they gave me and that is why I need them to pay about 20% of the bill for me.
I am good about paying my bills. If I change places with my insurance company, that will have to change.
I guess I’ll find out what the truth is soon, after the insurer and the hospital decide what truth looks like.