In yet another example of egregious hospital bills, Dallas-area resident Axelle Brown received an outrageous bill for using an out-of-network Doctor when she went into labor at her in-network hospital.
“One of the first questions they asked me is, ‘Do you want anesthesia?’ And I being a first time mom, I said yes,” Brown told NBC-DFW. “I get a bill a few months later for almost $6,000, which was shocking to me because I was at an in-network hospital. I’m a teacher. I don’t make very much. This bill is more than I make in two months. I called them and was crying on the phone with them.”
Brown’s health insurance, Aetna, currently lists Baylor Scott & White as part of their network. The anesthesiologist from Northstar Anesthesia, however, was not covered by Aetna, subsequently leaving Brown and her newborn baby stuck with a $6,000 bill that she couldn’t pay.
When reached for comment by NBC-DFW, Baylor Scott & White stated that “navigating the health-care system is complex and it has processes to help when the unexpected happens.”
Once the story was reported by NBC-DFW, Northstar Anesthesia agreed to lower Brown’s bill to $170, which isn’t as surprising or generous as you would believe. What’s atrocious is that Northstar Anesthesia was willing to bill an individual 3,429% over what they would have been willing to settle for in the end.