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Old 02-20-2015, 09:46 AM   #61
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These exorbitant costs are the reason for our health insurance increased premiums. I wonder what the fees would have been if you had no insurance??
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Old 02-20-2015, 11:05 AM   #62
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You do have to watch ambulance rides in the US as well. I've had two of them, the first a helicopter between Nantucket Island & Boston (around 80 miles) - $13,634.00. The second was a standard ambulance from Buckskin Mountain State Park to Parker AZ, (13.4 miles) - $1640.73. I'm awfully glad my insurance covered most of each.
While visiting Orcas Island in the Puget Sound a few years ago I spoke to a resident about living there. She told me that emergency medical evacuations via helicopter to a mainland hospital were a big concern, as they cost $10,000. The residents of Orcas had set up some kind of insurance pool to pay for these. That's something to think about if one is considering retiring to an island.
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Old 02-20-2015, 01:18 PM   #63
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You do have to watch ambulance rides in the US as well. I've had two of them, the first a helicopter between Nantucket Island & Boston (around 80 miles) - $13,634.00. The second was a standard ambulance from Buckskin Mountain State Park to Parker AZ, (13.4 miles) - $1640.73. I'm awfully glad my insurance covered most of each.
Wow. 16K. At least it was a helicopter.

My ambulance fee horror story: years ago my wife and daughter were rear ended at a stop light here in San Antonio. A guy in a red Chevy pickup just came at them and for whatever reason didn't stop. They happened to be in a Mazda Protege, which pretty much folded up when it got pushed into the car in front of it. They used the "jaws of life" to pry the car doors open and get them out. Neither my wife or daughter was hurt, but they were put on backboards and transported to the hospital anyway to check for whiplash or some spinal injuries. The hospital was 3/4 of a mile up the same street.

We received a settlement from the other drivers' insurance company which paid for all the medical. Months later, we received a bill from the ambulance company claiming they had only been partially paid. They had received $800 each for both my wife and my daughter's 3/4 mile trip. They wanted an additional $587 each. That means the ambulance bill for a single 3/4 mile trip to the hospital was $2774.

I wrote them a nice letter which concluded with the following sentence:

"In short, for all the reasons stated above, getting any more money out of me will be harder for you than getting hot butter up a wildcat's backside -- but you are more than welcome to try."

Never heard from them again.
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Old 02-20-2015, 05:46 PM   #64
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Wow. 16K. At least it was a helicopter.

I wrote them a nice letter which concluded with the following sentence:

"In short, for all the reasons stated above, getting any more money out of me will be harder for you than getting hot butter up a wildcat's backside -- but you are more than welcome to try."

Never heard from them again.
rbryan4, may I have your permission to use this remark to start my personal collection of practical responses to "governmentallity" requests.
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Old 02-20-2015, 05:50 PM   #65
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I think it was probably his offer to bring the hot butter and the wildcat to their office that had the desired effect.
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Old 02-20-2015, 06:04 PM   #66
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rbryan4, may I have your permission to use this remark to start my personal collection of practical responses to "governmentallity" requests.
Mark
Absolutely! Put it in your arsenal.
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Old 02-20-2015, 07:45 PM   #67
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Just because someone needs to say something good about government-run services...

I received a bill for an out-of-province ambulance trip, for hundreds of dollars. They had no online payment system, so I called them to talk about how to pay it, and how to ensure that I had whatever document I needed to claim reimbursement from my private insurer. Their response? "Oh, now that we know you have insurance we'll just bill them - you don't have to pay us." Excellent!
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Old 02-20-2015, 07:59 PM   #68
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I work for an insurance company and we have horrible coverage. When my daughter needed braces he said it was 2600 total for all services involed. I said to him can we talk privately and we did I said here 1500 dollars cash he took and it was done deal. I have health insurance which I pay for high rate but its mainly for a serious event. Sad country really, spend 10 years in military, go to school, and get a good job which work hard but the reality is that I am just a number I tell my daughter all the time nobody owes you anything. I am just thankful to be working
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Old 02-20-2015, 08:11 PM   #69
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When my daughter needed braces he said it was 2600 total for all services involed. I said to him can we talk privately and we did I said here 1500 dollars cash he took and it was done deal
That used to be common in windshield replacements - one price for the insurance company, and another for the private customer. I would call it fraud: the vendor (glass shop, or orthodontist) is fraudulently claiming to the party with deep pockets (the insurer) that the price is higher than it really is. I don't like being used to commit fraud.

It could also be tax evasion - taking cash "under the table" and not recording it in the books so the income is not declared, and no tax is paid on it. I don't like being used to commit tax evasion, either. A variation is theft-by-employee: I was offered a special price for a cash purchase with no receipt from a used auto parts business, which means the guy behind the counter was offering to steal it from his employer and fence it to me, pocketing the cash. When someone offers a special deal like this, I look for a more legitimate business to deal with.

But maybe that's just me...
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Old 02-20-2015, 09:39 PM   #70
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I dunno. I wouldn't read too much into it. I've negotiated with insurance companies before for a better deal, and I don't see much difference between that and what Kevin describes. I'd say 'good for you' because he negotiated a good deal with cash. Insurance is just a product like anything else, and like anything else, negotiation can get you a better deal. Having said all that, I'm no fan of the insurance industry, and I think they have plenty of fraud to go around.

As to your scenario with the under-the-counter auto parts, yeah, that's obvious fraud, and I wouldn't do it either.
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