A New Jersey teacher said he was charged nearly $9,000 after he showed a cut middle finger to a hospital emergency room aide. Baer Hanusz-Rajkowski said he went to the Bayonne Medical Center last August after he cut his finger with a hammer and thought he needed stitches, but it turns out he didn't.
Instead, he was sent home after he got a tetanus shot from a nurse practitioner who also sterilized the cut, applied some antibacterial ointment to it, and put a bandage on it. Then he got the bill: $8,200 for the emergency room visit, $180 for the shot, $242 for the bandage and $8 for the ointment, plus hundreds of dollars for the nurse practitioner.
The hospital's CEO said that the visit cost so much because his insurance carrier UnitedHealthcare refuses to offer fair reimbursement rates. But, UnitedHealthcare responded by saying the hospital was just trying to gouge its members. The New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute said the right price for getting a finger bandaged should be $400 to $1,000.
In a time where the medical industry is undergoing massive changes, injury victims are the most vulnerable to the negative side effects. Regardless of who is wrong or right in this situation when it comes to coverage, the growing costs of a simple emergency room or hospital procedure is insane. If a cut finger costs $9,000, how much does an injury victim have to pay for a neck injury or broken bones?
Now that medical bills are reaching an all-time high for injury victims, especially those with no health insurance, it is more important than ever to have a personal injury lawyer on your side. Chances are that insurance companies are not taking this “inflation” into account when offering you a settlement, but a board-certified lawyer will ensure that all of your current and future medical bills are taken care of.