Katy and Michael Branson were preparing for a fun night out in their home town of Las Vegas and like many planned, fun, parenting moments, their child didn't get the memo. The babysitter was arranged, they had tickets to a show, and they were in the process of getting ready for their night out when their daughter Lucy interrupted them. The parents describe Lucy as looking uncomfortable and dad, Michael was the first to guess what was wrong. She seemed to have something up her nose. What she had up her nose, wasn't the run of the mill, three-year-old boogers though.
Lucy had decided that it would be a good idea to see how far up each nostril she could get a pair of pink Polly Pocket doll shoes and now they were stuck.
The Bransons first tried to dislodge the doll shoes from her nose by getting her to blow but Lucy couldn't manage to blow hard enough to get the job done. So mom tried to use a pair of tweezers to get the shoes out. She was able to successfully get one pair out but couldn't reach the second shoe. This is when they decided it was time to take Lucy to an urgent care center close by.
The doctors at the urgent care center were also unsuccessful in getting the second shoe out of Lucy's nose and the suggestion was made that they take her to the emergency room. Finally, they were successful and the emergency room doctor was able to get the shoe out of Lucy's nose. The doctor was apparently skilled at removing things from kid's noses as he told Michael that it's usually a Tic Tac that he found in the noses of kids.
Katy and Michael were relieved when Lucy's nose got back to normal and even more thrilled that it was done in time to make it to their show. They'd chalked it up as another eventful and unpredictable day in the life of a parent until they received the hospital bill.
To say that they were shocked when they received a bill for $2,658.98 is an understatement. This broke down into $1,732 for the hospital bill and $926.98 for the physician bills. The physician took all of two-second to remove the shoe but was able to bill the Bransons almost $1,000 for his work.
To be fair, the Branson's had a high deductible health care plan which means that they traded in lower monthly premiums for higher co-payments during hospital visits but that despite what type of plan they had, the bill would've been the same. The only difference if they had a lower deductible plan is that their monthly premiums would be $500 higher and their insurance company would've been responsible for the outrageous hospital bill instead of them. If you live in America, you're most likely aware of the debates around healthcare and the affordability of it and this incident shows first-hand just how expensive and unaffordable it can be.