According to my healthcare provider’s online site, that is apparently what my recent 6-hour stint in the hospital cost.
Now, I have already shelled out the $150 ER co-pay, and this claim is still under “pending” so I am hoping to GOD this isn’t something that comes back to me in the form of an actual BILL because THREE THOUSAND DOLLARS for three IV bags o’ glucose and some nausea medicine?
Call me naive because I have not been in an actual hospital bed since, ooohh, birth, but: for real?
I know in my last entry I said I’d spare you the details, but what basically happened is this: I got sick early in the evening a few weeks ago, and after hours and hours of vomiting and umm, other things, I had my pal Jen take me to the ER at midnight. Because after spewing every half hour for hours and hours I did not want to pass out from the constant vomiting and wind up dying alone from like, dehydration. Or you know, eventually die of kidney damage from severe dehydration.
So, Jen took me to the ER. Where the process to get admitted was so horribly long I should have just vomited all over the place to let them know I WAS SERIOUS.
Instead, I sat all curled up in a chair trying not to vomit, answering all the questions necessary for all the paper work all the while making jokes to get through the pain.
I mean, I do not know how you deal with the pain, but I like to let the inappropriate jokes fly. Like, when it took forever for anyone on staff to actually acknowledge me to even start the paper work I was all, “Finally, dude. I was wondering how long it would take before I had to get all Shirley McClain Terms of Endearment in order to get some attention around here. Y’all are pretty loose with your definition of “Emergency,” eh?”
So, I wasn’t making any friends, but you know, I blame the gut pain.
Like, during questioning about prior medical history I was all, “yeah, just a little while ago your people shaved a possibly cancerous mole off my leg, which thankfully turned out to be benign. But clearly, that mole held all my Powers of Immunity because I haven’t been this sick since ’93. You have taken my magic immunity mole, and I want it back.”
Again, not so many laughs from the nurses, but they couldn’t get me off their hands and into the care of the doctor soon enough after I answered, “My sister. She would be pretty good at identifying the corpse,” after they asked about my “next of kin” contact.
Anyway, the bad comedy? Not so appreciated by anyone other than my pal Jen. Which was good, because she spent the rest of the wee hours of the morn’ on uncomfortable chairs either listening to me retch from the other room, or watching me get poked with needles. We can now file this under, Friendship, True Test Of for later reference.
Anyway, all in all, I can guess what actually cost three thousand dollars. It was “the second location.” I was in the ER room for a couple of hours, waiting for the IV to drain into my veins, trying not to … sorry there I go again with the vomit word! But beware, here comes the also uncomfortable mention of the urine sample! because even after spending a couple of hours getting pumped with liquids I was so dehydrated, I could not umm… produce. And I was still, umm, retching. So the Doc said I couldn’t leave until I could, not only “produce” but also hold down some apple juice (total OJ on trial Johnny Cochran school of medicine: you will drink juice, until you produce!) So, would I mind getting carted off to another special part of the hospital so I could get some rest and, you know, make a little more room in their ER because I was so dehydrated this was all going to take more time than expected?
Okay fine, they needed the room, blood samples weren’t good enough they needed a little pee too, so I agreed to go.
But, you know how in any abduction scenario they say (and by they, I shamefully admit I mean Oprah) “never let them take you to the second location!” Because the worst of the worst always happens in the second location? Well, apparently this also holds true in the American Healthcare system. Because while the second location looked deceivingly JUST like a REGULAR old hospital room, where I could sleep a little bit while the additional IVs did their work -- this room was apparently The Donald Trump Suite.
Because not only are all things Trump totally overvalued, but so was this hospital room. Because I woke up approximately two and a half hours later to a tepid cup of apple juice (with straw!), and what would eventually be a $3017.13 hospital visit.
I know. Most expensive nap I have ever taken in my life.
And not even a pillow mint to speak of.
Cross fingers my healthcare plan is accepted and my $150 co-pay covers it all!