Helicopter ride to the hospital

  1. My brother in law used to be the base director for stars in Alberta. They bought a new helicopter and didn’t realize that for every hour flown it needs two hour of maintenance. Also stars is a non for profit and free of charge. Canada, gotta love it!

  2. That's about $310 per mile. I'm not sure of the going rate on jet fuel but there's no fucking way it's that much. Robbery is what this is.

  3. I mean hydrazine is pretty expensive but overall some rocket fuels are decently cheaply priced per kg.

  4. I've read that RP-1 rocket fuel is just a more refined version of jet fuel, so that statement is somewhat true.

  5. They say helicopters depreciate the most in the first 133 miles off the lot. Gotta make up the difference

  6. Imagine being in that situation preflight and actually given the opportunity to make a decision based on the life flight bill.

  7. My 89 year old grandmother, after having multiple strokes, while on a life flight to the hospital kept telling the flight staff 'let me die, let me die, I can't afford this! I'll loose everything! Just let me die!'

  8. I’m almost sure you could hire a chopper for the full day and it would be less than this, they can write whatever fucking numbers they want, not many can accurately guess helicopter costs

  9. A family member was going to be transported about 450 miles via an ambulance and we were told it would cost approximately $16,000.

  10. I’m honestly surprised it was only $16,000 (not that that’s not still insane). My mom’s <2 mile ambulance ride was $10,000 back in 2014.

  11. In my country where there's national healthcare, my cousin pays RM750 (US$168) for a 600KM trip (372 miles) in an ambulance

  12. Assuming the doc let the patient (pt) ride in private transport, if something happens, the doc is liable. They make you sign the AMA (against medical advice) form so that they aren't liable. The doc might have very well done the same thing if they were the pt.

  13. The doctor was just covering his/her ass. Having been in similar situations before as a doctor, they were probably rooting for you to just drive them, even if that was “against medical advice.”

  14. As a doctor we’re forced to die on the hill of whatever is safer for the patient. If this doc didn’t recommend that, and your family member didn’t make it to the hospital for whatever reason, the doc would be absolutely destroyed in court. We don’t mind if you do something against medical advice but we have to give our advice and document that you went against it

  15. Let's say the doctor says "well alright let's just check her out and you drive her. Maybe it's only a 1% chance she has a bad turn and needs ambulance facilities. If the 1% hits, the doctor is now dealing with your malpractice suit.

  16. It becomes a medico-legal issue for physicians. Some of the conditions have low risk but definitely carry some risk. A physician who says that you are fit to go will be liable for your safety.

  17. When I was young, I lived in the middle of nowhere and my father had heart issues. He let the local hospital with the local specialist treat him exactly once. Dad believed they nearly killed him. He may have been right.

  18. My husband broke his femur hiking. It took search and rescue about 2 hours to get him out of the canyon. They used a stretcher that was on a bicycle wheel. We did get billed $2700 for the ambulance transport. Edit to add - search and rescue never billed us. We only paid for the ambulance.

  19. As someone who has literally pulled people off mountains and sent them up to a helicopter… we charged them nothing.

  20. Kinda sad to think that you have two choices when you get a serious injury, A: be left to die, or B: be in debt for the rest of your life.

  21. It's the mandatory, "would you like to round up to support our employees going through college because we dont pay them enough?" fee

  22. We were warned before hiking on the Chilkoot trail up in Alaska and Yukon that if you have to get choppered out while on the American side it would be a 35k trip to Juneau as there is no hospital in Skagway.

  23. I dislocated my shoulder up on the mountain while snowboarding. After getting the bill from the ambulance, I wish they left me up on that mountain.

  24. My brother took a helicopter to a hospital. He had to fly from one hospital to another for emergency surgery because the local hospital he was taken to wasn’t able to help him. I remember that bill was $50,000 around 1999.

  25. They'll pull that shit all the time. I dislocated my ankle a couple years ago and the amount of bullshit I had to go through was insane. First they gave me a bill, but didn't tell me what the charges were for. This bill was through the Hospitals website. Then I got another bill from some fuckin place called mydocbill.com. Which was around the same price as the one on the hospitals website. So I was like what the fuck is this? Are they trying to double charge me? I call the phone number for mydocbill and the lady says I have to pay the full $5k bill up front. No payment plan or anything. So I just hang up on her. Eventually I get an itemized list of charges from the hospital and mydocbill and guess what? They were trying to fucking double charge me. This all happened in 2019 and I still haven't paid that shit. I think the hospital sold my debt to a debt collector agency and I just ignored all their calls. Haven't heard from them since and it hasn't effected my credit score. This was after I spent literally 6 months trying to get this shit all sorted out with my Medicare because I just graduated college and didn't have a job at the time.

  26. This!!! I'd rather be dead than have to live on the streets cause of a flipping medical bill breaking me!

  27. As someone who works in medical coding. The worst part of getting hurt is the bill for the ambulance or helicopter ride you get after you get your hospital bill. It's double fucked.

  28. At this point you may as well just tell them you will pay $10/month into perpetuity or nothing at all. Unless they give you a 90%+ discount to pay in full.

  29. This just happened to me! I thought it was done with and then I get the ambulance bill. To make it worse I was charged $1000 of the $1400 with the notice “your insurance company paid a contracted rate but we don’t have a contract with them”. I called the insurance company and they are now re-processing it which can apparently take 14 days. They can not tell me what the outcome will be until 14 days have passed. Ambulance ride was literally 3 minutes btw.

  30. My dad had to be helicoptered like 20 miles. They started calling to arrange payment 2 days later while he was still in the hospital. They didn't even check their own records to see if he had helicopter insurance, which he did.

  31. Many years ago, I was riding my bike and got hit by a car. Ambulance showed up, and I declined the ride the hospital. Thought, fuck it, I’ll just walk there, carrying my busted bike. I had a concussion and some other injuries. At times I think it was a terrible choice, and then I see stuff like this.

  32. I once luxated my elbow snowboarding. Guy asked me about my insurance. Had my DAV membership (German alpine club) + abroad addon for my normal insurance which was 12€ a year at this point. The dude instandly called the Heli and I had the coolest flight, they even let me sit behind the pilot because it didn't need to get strapped into the bed thing and shoved in the "trunk". Blue sky and fresh powder day, you know how beautiful mountains are on these days.

  33. In South Africa you only pay for the helicopter mountain rescue if you were supposed to have a permit but didn't. Not sure how it works on private land though.

  34. Not sure if all of the US can get this but I have Life Flight insurance just because we live in an rural area where our hospital will have to send ANY major medical issue via helicopter. It's only $75 per YEAR per household

  35. I got one of these for a flight 10 years ago for $46k and had pretty good insurance. It wasn't a contracted service so Blue Cross gave me a check for $10k and said lol good luck. I even asked the doc before we got on the plane if it was covered by insurance.

  36. Depends what country you’re from mildly infuriating for Americans. But would never happen in almost any other developed country.

  37. Because Americans are so desensitized to their bullshit healthcare system that they think this is normal and acceptable.

  38. EMS Helicopter pilot here. That bill is thousands of dollars more than what I get paid in a year. We do hundreds of transports a year sometimes and that money magically disappears into everyone’s pockets except the employees. It certainly does cost a shitload of money to operate a helicopter though. There’s no way around it. However, I would say 100k is certainly a bit excessive. Pro Tip: A lot of companies allow for same day membership transports. Meaning, if you need a transport, go online and sign up with the company (if you’re not bleeding out obviously). Pay the yearly fee on the spot (usually only $80-100). Then call the choppa. Boom, 100k transport for 80 bucks.

  39. My favorite part of aviation. Everyone gets paid but the people doing the job. I dispatch and make $20/hr. The janitor in my building makes $25/hr. Which is a fair amount for someone cleaning a building but damn I spent money to get licensed and trained and if I fuck up I loose that.

  40. I know this solution is better than nothing, but fuck this country for allowing predatory shit like this to perpetuate itself. Work arounds like this should be automatically applied for fellow Americans to look out for one another. Because it clearly doesn't enrich the pilots by charging $10s of thousands per use of service. This country is robbing itself blind.

  41. Is there a list of what companies cover what regions because this is absolutely shit that no one knows about let alone even knows about.

  42. If I could become an investor in Air Methods and share in these profits I would, but I can't, because it's a private company that's bankrolled by New York private equity firms.

  43. the really frustrating part is that, just like the real American IRS, they will only accept payment in Itunes gift cards.

  44. An NYC helicopter tour runs about at the rate of $600 per hour. A medical helicopter can go about 120mph, but let's say it was half that speed, and had to get there and back. That's 4 hours plus well say even 2 more for loading and unloading, so a total of six hours.

  45. Excuse me, sir. You conveniently FORGOT to mention that the Helicopter pilot is being paid $20,000 an hour.

  46. The numbers in this post are made up and don’t reflect an accurate cost of the trip. These EMS companies purposely overcharge the patients with insurance in order to make up the cost of flying someone with no insurance or Medicaid.

  47. You still have to pay the pilots and medical professionals and maintenance crew to keep the aircraft on-call 24 hours a day, 365 a year. You aren’t just paying them when they fly. You have to pay them to live in firehouse like conditions to be ready to go at a moment’s notice.

  48. I suspect that your estimated cost for three medical professionals is very low. Their cost is not just their wages, but also the wages for them being on-duty but not actually working, insurance, medical consumables, etc. The actual cost is probably closer to $1,000 than $100.

  49. Singles might be $600 per hour, but turbine twins are $2000. Tour helicopters have one pilot and a well optimized schedule so the bird and the pilot are either 100% used or off duty.

  50. I tore my Achilles on top of a mountain one time on dry ice had a 8500 foot dissent but still walked the full way and made my injury worse just so I wouldn’t have to pay that

  51. I am so curious about this very thing. If you’re unconscious when help arrives and can’t make any decisions on your transport method to the hospital, how can they legally bill you? For example, I have a seizure disorder so, unfortunately, it would be “normal” for me to have an episode even in a public space. Any bystander wouldn’t know that so would likely call for EMS and I would be transported, but none of that would have been necessary. I would understand but be so annoyed. That’s honestly a major fear of mine.

  52. Clever, upsetting how you need to be a lawyer to avoid crippling debt for a service that should be payed for through taxes…

  53. This would unfortunately never work. Think off all the incapacitated people who show up to the emergency room. They receive treatment, surgery, etc. They receive treatment without consenting

  54. You don’t. You file bankruptcy so it becomes uncollectable, or pay $20 a month until you die so they cant say you’re not paying

  55. Canadian here. Just as baffled that this is remotely possible and some Americans are STILL holding onto their system for dear life.

  56. im pretty sure they charge shit tons of money because they know that health insurance is going to cut the bill by 90%, but i dont really know that much about the american healthcare system or insurance

  57. It’s cheaper to call an Uber, even one of those sightseeing helicopter rides. Or just dying works too.

  58. Tell them your mom can pay $25 or $50 per month or some other amount. They must accept it or not. They have to write it off or negotiate in faith.

  59. My wife was flown by helicopter from the local “hospital” to ICU in Erie, PA. She spent 4 days in ICU and passed away. I didn’t get a bill for the helicopter ride but her ICU bill was $150000 I’m glad we had insurance my portion was $6. I can’t even imagine what the helicopter ride cost.

  60. Something's seriously wrong when you end up bankrupt or beyond for just emergency medical transport... I can only imagine the nightmare bill from the ER just to be sure to wipe out retirement savings too,smh.

  61. “We saved your life and you owe us big, so we’re going to ruin what’s left of your life”

  62. You can buy half a R22. They are typically around $250k. Medevac choppers range from 1.9-7mil so they literally pay off the helicopter stupid fast.

  63. Yeah these rides are almost worth just saying "it's okay ..it's my time..no need ..maybe I can walk it off ..hand me my leg there ..some duct tape ."

  64. Was that for like a procedure too? Or just the helicopter ride? Also how long was the helicopter ride roughly?

  65. It says 133 air miles for 41k and change. Not sure how they feel these are justified charges? Even if pilots and medics were paid $1,000 per hour it couldn’t be justified to charge this much. Just say no thanks, I’ll die here thanks.

  66. People fail to realize that “American Healthcare” is a business, it’s only concern is to make money not pay out money. They know that because our awesome government mandates people have healthcare, they can do whatever they want. Take your money and not cover anything. They have excuses for almost every scenario to avoid actually paying for peoples needs.

  67. I had to get my dumb ass air rescued off a mountain in Germany once, including a ride to the hospital. It cost me 1500 euros. Or 4500 split among 3 people.

  68. Holy, I did not expect this to blow up this much. My mom was visiting family in a smaller town and had a minor stroke. She was driven to the hospital but they unfortunately did not have the right equipment to take on her minor stroke and she was flown in a helicopter to a hospital about two hours away. My mom unfortunately did not have insurance at the time.

  69. Yep. It cost almost that much back in 2006. My ex was life flighted, that bill got written off because he was 19 and broke, his parents were dirt poor, there was no point in squeezing blood out of the turnip. Maybe you can find some programs or options to help lower this. I’m sorry this happened to your family. It shouldn’t be this way.

  70. Friend also got to the hospital by helicopter… in germany… it cost him 0. He didnt even see any bill.

  71. Absolutely baffled that there’s people here discussing how reasonable £10k is for a life saving flight 😂 nobody should have to part with 10K just to be alive, nobody should have to sign up to a subscription service for helicopter rescue/medics, this is just capitalism gone mad 😂 the more I learn, the more I realise that America is indeed the bad place. I’m sorry that it’s like that for you guys, it’s sucks, it really does.

  72. Damn, converted it to my currency (South African Rand ZAR) and was shocked to see it was over a million, like damn, for that price I can buy a second hand helicopter.

  73. My class mate in grade school had to be taken to a hospital with a helicopter because of diabetis and at the end of all the treatments their family had to pay a whooping 0€ thanks to healthcare in our country.

  74. Got the same kind of bill for my dads airlift but he ended up passing a week later. So not only is my mom grieving the loss of her husband but she’s having to worry about a MASSIVE transport bill. It’s absolutely cruel to say the least

  75. Posts like this makes me appreciate our Czech healthcare system. Yes it have flaws, yes I pay every month but when I'm hurt it won't make me kill myself cuz I wouldn't have any life anyways.

  76. Idk why you call what you have there “freedom”. In my country, we have a really good insurances, like one of the best in the world. We would pay around 15$ to 40$ a month, and almost no additional costs when you need medical care. So, no, in my country I can’t buy machine guns when I am 12 years old, and I indeed pay more taxes, but at least I don’t pay 100k for flying in a helicopter between two hospitals. I am sorry for all the patriots here, but United States is really fucked up

  77. I know this may sound like I'm giving into this system that's clearly broken and I kinda am, but... Seriously I highly recommend everyone that can afford it, to look into MASA insurance. I don't know the price for others, but I pay 14 dollars a month to have Ambulance insurance, Ground AND Air for coverage in the entire US. If you live in any rural communities, or even on the out skirts of big cities, you need this. It makes that $60-100k bill, closer to a grand, still sucks but anyone can pay that within reason.

  78. I got one of those lovely heli rides on Christmas day. With a bill to match. It was 30 miles, and for a compound fracture of the humerus.

  79. Damn! With those prices you could get your own helicopter pilots license, fly yourself to the hospital and still save around $81k

  80. This is absolutely absurd for me as an Italian, I’m a bit ignorant on the argument but how in the hell do you pay something like this ????? I know there is insurance but….damn bro

  81. 6 years ago my newborn son had a 45 minute flight to a larger children's hospital. $72,000 for the flight.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may have missed