|Pubblichiamo questo articolo che offre una rappresentazione su quello che può capitare ad un cittadino/a che ha la necessità di una prestazione diagnostica dal sistema sanitario Usa basato sulle assicurazioni private. Questo articolo di denuncia mette in luce la totale imprevedibilità del costo di una prestazione sanitaria, costo che può ridurre sul lastrico una famiglia. Per favorire la lettura postiamo in coda una traduzione effettuata con google translator. editor|
The $18,000 Breast Biopsy: When Having Insurance Costs You a Bundle
She was 35, the same age her mother had been when she received a breast cancer diagnosis in 1997. The disease eventually killed Yuengling’s mom in 2017.
“It was the hardest experience, seeing her suffer,” said Yuengling, who lives in Conway, South Carolina.
After a mammogram confirmed the lump needed further investigation, Yuengling scheduled a breast biopsy for Valentine’s Day this year at Grand Strand Medical Center in Myrtle Beach.
Among many concerns she had ahead of that appointment — the first being a potential cancer diagnosis — Yuengling needed to know how much the biopsy would cost. She has a $6,000 annual deductible — the amount her health plan requires she pay before its contribution kicks in — and she wasn’t close to hitting that. Whatever the procedure cost, Yuengling knew she’d be on the hook for most of it.
But the hospital wouldn’t give her a price. She was told her providers wouldn’t know what type of biopsy needle they needed until the procedure was underway and that would impact the price.
The hospital’s online “Patient Payment Estimator” showed Yuengling an uninsured patient would owe about $1,400 for the procedure.
“That’s fine. No big deal,” she thought to herself, confident it would be cheaper for her because she did have insurance. A Google search indicated it could be closer to $3,000, but Yuengling thought that price seemed reasonable, too. She wasn’t fretting too much about money as she underwent the procedure.
It soon brought the good news that she didn’t have cancer.
Then the bill came.
The Patient: Dani Yuengling, now 36, who is covered by Cigna through her employer, a human resources contractor for the Mayo Clinic.
Medical Service: An ultrasound-guided breast biopsy.
Service Provider: Grand Strand Medical Center, a 403-bed, for-profit hospital in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. It is one of 182 hospitals owned by Nashville-based HCA Healthcare, which generated $58.7 billion in revenue last year.
Total Bill: $17,979 for the procedure, including lab work, pharmacy charges, and sterile supplies. Cigna’s in-network negotiated rate was $8,424.14, of which the insurance company paid the hospital $3,254.47. Yuengling was billed $5,169.67, the balance of her deductible.
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