A woman in the United States says she was billed $34,927.43 after being tested and treated for the coronavirus, Time magazine reports.
When Danni Askini first came down with the symptoms of the virus — shortness of breath, a fever, a cough and migraines — she was told by a doctor to go to the emergency room. There, she was told she had pneumonia and could go home. She visited the emergency room two more times as her symptoms persisted and worsened before she was finally tested for the coronavirus. Three days later her results showed she had COVID-19.
The tests and her treatment for the viral illness all took place while Askini was uninsured and before President Trump signed congressional measures ensuring free diagnostic testing. After, she got a bill totaling $34,927.43.
“I was pretty sticker-shocked,” she told Time. “I personally don’t know anybody who has that kind of money.”
Askini was between jobs and planning to move and start a new role in Washington, D.C., when she was diagnosed with the virus, and has since applied for Medicaid in the hope it can retroactively cover her bill. She has now tested negative for COVID-19, but is still taking precautions to recover and isolate.
On Twitter, Askini expressed her frustration with local health care agencies and described how difficult it was to get tested for COVID-19 despite having tests for the flu, strep throat and other illnesses come back negative.