Hospital Bills Make Me Want to Pull My Hair Out
My 5 year old son broke his leg last month while at home with his dad. We immediately took him to his pediatrician, who then referred us to the radiology lab at the hospital for x-rays.
The radiology lab took the x-rays and then (without asking) transferred him to the ER while we waited to find out if his growth plate was also fractured. A fractured growth plate would have required surgery. Thankfully, he only had a fractured tibia and the growth plate was left undamaged. After 4 hours, we went on our way home with a splint and a referral to an orthopedic doctor for a cast.
At our appointment with the orthopedic doctor, we found out that the angle of the fractured bone was too off to grow back correctly, so we scheduled an outpatient procedure at a children's hospital to re-align the bone before casting it.
As you can imagine, all of these visits are adding up. My biggest problem, however, is with the ER transfer on the night of the fracture.
I got the bill from the hospital. Pre-insurance for radiology was $1200. Pre-insurance for the ER was $1000. After insurance, they are asking for $1100. I am pretty upset about that. There was absolutely no reason for us to even be transferred to the ER. The only thing they did was give him a tylenol elixir and put a splint on his leg once we found out the growth plate wasn't fractured. The ER doctors that consulted us told us they were not experienced to know how to handle it, so they didn't do anything. We basically used it as a waiting room while radiology figured out the state of his leg.
Here's my question. Can I call the hospital and contest the ER charge? Do I even have ground to stand on? The bill doesn't even list itemize anything. It just says "emergency room services."
Also, I pulled up the info online through my insurance company and the amount they say we will owe is a lot less - $500. I got the bill from the hospital, so I'm uncomfortable just ignoring it. What do I do?!