Something seems wrong…

Dear Editor:

I was dismayed to recently receive a bill for $782 for a very brief visit to St. Mary Hospital emergency room.

When I called about the bill, I explained that though I have insurance I still find the amount staggering. The billing office told me that my carrier (a PPO, not an HMO) was being billed just $150 for the visit (and I am responsible for a $50 co-payment).

How could the discrepancy be so large? People who don’t have insurance are carrying an undue burden, to say the least.

In the other couple visits I’ve made to the emergency room in the last 20 years, I don’t remember this kind of figure, nor this kind of discrepancy between the bill to someone without insurance and the bill to a contracted insurer. Something seems terribly wrong…

Happy I’m insured but what about others?