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Legislative crackdowns on out-of-network bills haven’t kept specialists from hitting patients with unexpected charges running into thousands of dollars.
Regular use of a more advanced screening method turns a low-cost procedure into a pricier one.
Only severely injured patients are supposed to be billed for “trauma team alert” fees that can exceed $50,000.
HCA charges patients an “activation fee” of up to $50,000 for trauma teams at centers located in half its 179 hospitals — and they often don’t need trauma care, an analysis of insurance claims data shows.