One emergency room visit. One EKG. One IV med for pain. Blood panels, CAT scan, yadda, yadda, so-on and so-forth. 8145 and change is what it would have cost Joe and I for his visit to the ER last month. The kicker? Not getting diagnosed with anything.
However, upon returning to work two days later... two co-workers (one happened to be Joe's regular doctor) made a visual diagnosis. Then was told to go home, and not return to work for 7 days. What was it that caused all the trouble? Shingles. An exacerbation of the same virus that causes chicken pox.
I can't imagine how one would begin to pay medical bills without having insurance. Joe talks about patients in the heart hospital all the time that have no medical coverage. Recently one comes to mind. A thirty-one year old male from Clinton, just released, will likely have a $250K medical bill follow him home. At least that's what Joe estimated his bill to be. After all, he was in the hospital for two weeks.
But, Eighty-one hundred dollars? Just for an ER visit? Un-fucking-real!