Questionable Hospital bills… - My Breast Cancer ...

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Questionable Hospital bills…

Vala2021 profile image
11 Replies

Hello all! I was just curious if any of you have / had issues with hospital bills… crazy pricing and how did you go about it?

I am gettting Herceptin Hylecta shots; subcutaneous injections that take under 2 minutes. My Onco team were able to score FREE medication for me, but I didn’t know the fees just for the administration of the injection is expensive (imo) and of course I have not met my deductible, so I have to pay $800 for the administration of each shot ( 7 to go) Does this seem like a ridiculous amount for an “administration of a shot” ? Thanks for any of your replies or advice.

11 Replies
Happyrosie profile image
Happyrosie

I’m happy to say, Vala, that I the UK our healthcare is free. So we don’t pay for the medication nor for its delivery.BUT when I had herceptin injections the procedure was:

Interaction 1: Turn up for the appointment and be checked in

Interaction 2: greeted by health professional and seated, name and date of birth checked yet again.

Interaction 3: medication brought by another health professional and the two nurses together supervised and signed for the medication my presence, checking my name and date of birth again.

Interaction 4: medication injected. This takes (from memory) at least five minutes but in my case ten minutes as otherwise I had a bad reaction in the skin locally. Plaster put over the slight wound.

Interaction 5. Had to sit for 30 minutes to ensure I was safe.

Interaction 6. Make appointment for the next injection.

All this requires people and space to get these things done, and at least 45 minutes spent in a hospital setting. Every three weeks for a year.

As I say, for me this was free so I’m grateful for my country’s health service, but $800 seems a lot!

Vala2021 profile image
Vala2021 in reply to Happyrosie

Thanks Happyrosie for sharing your experience! Yes you are very fortunate to have free healthcare! I’ve been so stressed dealing with insurance and out of pocket payments on top of being diagnosed with Cancer! It just doesn’t seem right/fair. It’s like a full time job trying to figure out insurance/hospital bills & coding here in America.

Birthday2018 profile image
Birthday2018 in reply to Vala2021

So sorry it is costing so much. I too am in the UK and my treatment was free. I cannot understand the charges for such a horrible disease. It is hard enough dealing with diagnosis, treatment, a life change. Keep going, you deserve the best and to get well again xx

Vala2021 profile image
Vala2021 in reply to Birthday2018

So right!!! doesn’t make sense right?! but obviously here in the USA money is more important. just enjoy life as much as you can!

Birthday2018 profile image
Birthday2018 in reply to Vala2021

Sending lots of love and thinking of you xx

DCCC_204 profile image
DCCC_204

Hi. I’m from Canada & our healthcare is free but not all meds are free. In my limited experience so far ( I’ve had a lumpectomy so far) I’ve had to pay for my post surgery meds. I am fortunate to have health insurance from work which covers 80% for me. The 20% I pay is limited by a calculation based on annual income like 3% of combined gross$. I hope you are able to teach your insurance with no more difficulty. 🤞

Vala2021 profile image
Vala2021 in reply to DCCC_204

Thanks for your reply DCCC… It’s nice to hear about how other countries deal with health care! So ashamed with ours, it’s so bad and broken. I will figure out a way to settle these ridiculous bills!

Iknitandstitch profile image
Iknitandstitch

Hi

I am in UK but have had experience with USA hospital - had vacation home in Florida hubby was rushed into a hospital while we were there, it was a nightmare a total money grabbing experience from the start we had medical insurance cover worldwide cover from the UK but being in a " foreign" country even though we mostly speak the same language in some instances we definitely do not examples home buying, banking, and anything medical. I am sure that we could not have been the first UK people to end up in this particular hospital but you would have thought we had landed from outer space , unfortunately for us it was a very stressful time eventually he was released I use that term as the impression we got was oh he doesn't know how it works we will keep him here and get some more dollars out of him. several months later back in UK we got a letter from a debt collector saying we had not paid this bill, all bills were settle by our insurance we were put into a state of panic -when we spoke to him he was originally from UK but now lived in USA so could understand from both sides,e everything was sorted but it was far from a pleasant experience the bill was astronomical but out insurance got it down to an acceptable level of what they were prepared to pay almost half what was originally asked for! and the bill that was sent to debt collector never should have been sent to us in first place. a very distasteful experience.

I can imagine how you feel - overwhelmed - and you understand how USA system works- my only suggestion is to question it if you feel it is unjust, ask for a breakdown of charges, if its possible can you ring another hospital and get comparison of charges

Hugs from across the pond

Iknitandstitch (aka Diane )

Vala2021 profile image
Vala2021 in reply to Iknitandstitch

thanks Diane for sharing! wow what a terrible experience! yes I am getting some advice from a nonprofit organization that may help me out! Geez where is the care in healthcare in the US. I don’t need this extra stress! thanks for listening and all the best to you!

CancerkickerKathy profile image
CancerkickerKathy

While I did not have that treatment, I agree that being in the US many are about the money. If you do find this is the average charge, tell them you will make payments. I've been told even if you send $1/month they can't bother you. Some facilities do have financial support depending on your income too. Good luck.

Vala2021 profile image
Vala2021 in reply to CancerkickerKathy

Thanks Kathy! Yes, I will try to negotiate and unfortunately I don’t qualify for financial aid. I just want fair pricing… and to be more transparent about things. US Health insurance and hospital pricing can be tricky to navigate, but I have to keep pressing on!!! best of luck with everything

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