Are medical costs for traffic accident patients too high? After a serious car or truck accident in Homestead or any other community, survivors of the crash typically need emergency medical treatment. Many need long-term care, surgery, and other medical procedures. For some time now, personal injury attorneys in Homestead as well as survivors of motor vehicle crashes have been expressing concerns about the rising costs associated with medical care.
Lawsuit Alleges Higher Costs Under PIP
A recent lawsuit filed in Hillsborough County, Florida highlights the problem. The lawsuit is against the largest hospital chain in the state, HCA, and against West Palm Beach’s JFK Medical Center. Two patients injured in separate car accidents in 2013 allege in the claim that they were treated more for services at the hospital when compared with other patients.
One woman who was rushed to JFK Medical Center after being in a car accident needed four medical services, including two X-rays and two CT scans. According to the lawsuit, she would have been charged $466 for these services if she had been covered by Medicare. Instead, the hospital charged her $17,885.
Personal Injury Protection in Florida
The lawsuit alleges that when the medical bills go through car accident insurance Personal Injury Protection, the hospital charged more than in cases where the bills went through medical coverage. In Florida, Personal Injury Protection is required for drivers. The coverage has a cap of $10,000, so any amount above that figure must be paid by the patient.
The lawsuit may eventually become a class action lawsuit, since the plaintiffs believe that the problem can be found at many of Florida’s hospitals. In response to the legal claim, JFK Medical Center called the lawsuit “baseless” and promised to fight the allegations.
High Costs for Trauma Patients
It is not the first time that concerns have been raised about high medical costs for accident survivors and trauma patients. Other claims by patients allege that simply entering a trauma center for treatment can run up bills of tens of thousands of dollars – before any treatment costs are factored in. In addition, patients who have been in a serious car accident or traffic accident in Homestead or other community typically have many costs to consider, including:
- Hospital stays
- Diagnostic testing
- Medical imaging
- Medical or pharmaceutical devices
- Assisted living facilities
- At-home nursing care
Medical coverage, car insurance, and workers’ compensation in Homestead and other communities are meant to help patients defray these costs, but many patients have noted that even with plenty of coverage, they end up with high medical bills, especially as insurance carriers cut back on benefits and place further limits on coverage. Patients who think that they are covered often are surprised and dismayed to find considerable bills for services not covered by their insurance. Insurance disputes after a serious car or truck accident are not uncommon for this reason.
If you have been injured and are worried about the costs of your medical care, Flaxman Law Group would like to offer a free case consultation. Your no obligation consultation lets you review your options with a personal injury attorney so that you can find out what you can do to secure benefits and compensation if you qualify.