Thursday, August 7, 2008

$42, 944.32

I'm just now cleaning my office. It's been a while and it's trashed. I guess I take after my dad in that respect. There are just so many better things to do than organize paperwork.

In going through piles and piles of unopened mail I found one envelope with Boston's Children's Hospital listed as the return address. It dates back to June 29, 2008 and states:

Account #XXXXXXX
Account balance: $42, 944.32

This is to inform you that a claim for the below referenced patient has been submitted to your insurance and as of this date, we have yet to receive payment, or a response to the claim. In attempt to resolve issues related to the delay, your assistance is requested in contacting the member services department of your insurer.

Luna Ruth
Service dates: 04/27/08-04/29/08

Patient Financial Services,
Children's Hospital Boston

Um. Okay.

I checked my calendar and sure enough the dates correlate with Luna's balloon cath. She was in the hospital for a total of two nights. And received blood work, X-Rays, lung scan, anaesthesia, and of course the balloon cath.

Since we never received another notice (though I do still have a mountain of discarded mail sitting on my desk) I assume this was resolved. It seems so long ago. Paul was at a different job at the time. We no longer carry the insurance referenced. I suppose at some point some clerk at Blue Cross ponied-up the 43K. But I wonder if unbeknownst to us, there was a moment, much like the Michael Moore film SICKO where some worker-bee was instructed by her higher-up to toss the bill to the side for a few good billing cycles.

One wonders.