NY Hospital Waives $200,000 Birth Bill for Traveling Parents
Is there a certain time during pregnancy when you think it's smartest not to travel? Women and doctors have different limitations, but I do know someone who, if she was just dying to go on a trip and happened to be pregnant, would only go on out-of-state vacations during the first two trimesters. (I mean, you can only go on like 20% of the rides at Disneyland when you're pregnant anyway, so why even spend the money?)
Her reasons were more practical than that, but that's an added reason, I guess.
Just over the holidays, a couple from the UK decided to take a trip to New York. Katie Amos was 29-weeks pregnant when she and her partner, Lee Johnston, were enjoying a walk in the park — and had an unexpected arrival.
Their baby boy, Dax, felt like 29 weeks was enough time in the womb, so Amos gave birth during her vacation. In a different country. On another continent. Eleven weeks early. Without travel insurance.
In addition to the stresses that the premature birth of her son brought, Lenox Hill Hospital in New York estimated that Amos, Thompson, and Dax's stay at the hospital was going to cost upwards of $200,000. Not exactly pocket change for your average Brit — or your average anybody.
With the hospital bill being so absurdly expensive (which is another topic for another day), both Amos and Thompson were pretty desperate for any help they could get. Unbeknownst to them, some friends of theirs had started working to raise funds for the bills that they would inevitably have to pay.
While money was being raised, Lenox Hill Hospital was going above and beyond the call to help out the new parents. Not only did they find a place for the couple to stay, but they also did what they could to get them in contact with friends and family across the pond.
With all of the work that the family freinds had put into fundraising, they raised just over $18,000 — a large sum, but only a tenth of what they owed. However, Lenox Hill outdid themselves by committing to work with the insurance company on the $200,000 bill, so that “there will be no financial impact to the family”.
Pretty sweet, right?
With the $18,000 from the fundraiser, Amos and Thompson will be heading back to the UK when little Dax is healthy enough to go back home. Obviously, plane tickets wouldn't cost $18,000 to get three people to Great Britain, so the remainder of the money will be donated to the Ronald McDonald Fund.
Are you willing to take the risk to travel when you're pregnant?