Here's an eye-opener for ya:
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Posted by: TEEBONE ®

06/24/2020, 16:13:02

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The Captain's Journal » The Cost Of Getting Bitten By A Snake In America

3-4 minutes

News from North Carolina.

A 17-year-old was out collecting wood near his home in Hillsborough when he bent down to pick up a branch and a snake bit him on his left hand.

He knew almost immediately that it was a copperhead.

“He knows his snakes; he went to herpetology camp,” said Amy Carabetta, whose son Ian was bitten.

“I was scared,” she said. “His hand started to swell almost immediately.

Carabetta called 911 for an ambulance.

“My hand was really hard to move while I was in the hospital,” Ian said. “It surprisingly wasn’t painful.”

Carabetta was especially scared for her son because he wants to be a carpenter and his left hand is his dominant hand

“It was pretty scary the first night he was in the hospital,” Carabetta said. “I handed him a bottle, and he couldn’t unscrew it with his left hand.”

Ian got the treatment he needed, but when the bill came in the mail a few weeks later, Carabetta was shocked.

“I immediately got it out, put it on the hood of the car and took a picture of it and sent it to my husband,” she said. She then posted it on Facebook.

The bill totaled more than $225,000.

Ian’s hand healed completely, and his father’s insurance helped bring the family’s cost down to $175, Carabetta said.

“I don’t know if it would’ve happened that way if we hadn’t have had the treatment,” she said.

“The patient received 12 vials of antivenom, which cost about $200,000, including the hospital’s markup,” Duke Health officials said in an emailed statement to The News & Observer. “The patient’s insurance paid roughly half of the total amount billed based on its contract with Duke, which provides for a substantial discount. Duke has assumed the remaining balance, and the patient’s total out-of-pocket obligation is $175.”

I happen to know a little about this because I did some research when my Heidi-girl, the best dog ever in history, got bitten by a Copperhead.

The antivenom is made usually south of the border in Mexico.  They make it by injecting a select bovine population with venom, and extracting the antibodies over time to formulate the antivenom for humans.  By the way, this can cause stray bovine proteins to enter the human bloodstream if you have to be injected, and that itself can cause problems.

This antivenom is biological material and has to be refrigerated.  The cost when I looked into it was on the order of $10,000 – $12,000 per vial, or treatment, and the cost of recovery depends on how many vials you need.  Apparently the cost has gone up, and there is also a markup at the hospital (probably for simply investing the capital to have it in stock along with the shelf life of the material).

I don’t know how to advise, except to wear boots and watch your six if you’re going to be out and about in the summer and early fall.  This is one reason I don’t prefer to go hiking and backpacking in the summer.


Democrats wouldn't buy a clue if it was government subsidized.

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