Recently, I made a trip to the local ER for what turned out to be nothing. While there, I was well treated by the ER doc and the knowledgeable staff. All kinds of blood and fluid tests, urine tests, EKG and X-rays were taken. Modern medicine’s approach is to go overboard with tests, as most of us know.
I am on Medicare.
I received a breakdown of the charges for my stay — almost $13,000. A charge of about $1,000 to $3,000 would be high, but understandable. But even more ridiculous by a factor of 1,000 is that all Medicare paid the hospital for my visit was $363. My out-of-pocket expense was less than $100.
So the moral of the story is that next time I want to go to the doc, I’m better off going to the ER — it costs less, has very little waiting, I can go on my own schedule at any time of the day or night and I get all kinds of diagnostic tests run. They might even serve food in the ER — I’ve never asked.
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It seems that the only industry that makes any money is the supplier of paper and printer ink. Maybe that’s as it should be?
Jim Merzon, Templeton