A few days ago, I started with what l thought was a cold/flu. I believed l was just unlucky as l also had the flu starting Christmas day and going almost into the new year. I wasn’t too worried and just took some liquid medication for the symptoms. It got progressively worse though, and l could barely get up from bed. When l started to shiver despite my many layers of clothing and my back started aching uncontrollably, l knew it was much worse.

My teeth were chattering, not even the heater warmed me up. I knew it was more than likely a kidney infection. You see, the same thing had happened to me  2 years ago, but I waited so long to seek help, my kidneys almost shut down. I wasn’t going to let the same thing happen. Just past midnight, l told my husband to call a cab and head for the hospital. The cab was here in less than 10 minutes, and a short time later l was in a private hospital.

I had been there once for a mammogram. I didn’t want to go to the county hospital because everybody says there is always a long wait. Money was the least of my worries at this point so we decided on the

private. Luckily, it was very quiet in there, and there was only one patient before me. The doctor was in to see me after about a 10 minute wait. She asked the usual questions and l told her what l suspected based on my past experience. She asked for a urine sample and came to the same conclusion based on the urinalysis. She told me she was going to give me antibiotics and an anti inflammatory. I told her the one l had been given previously and she gave me a prescription. My visit with her was about 25 minutes.

When we went to pay, I was asked if there was any insurance to bill, l said no. It would be a cash transaction and l would submit the bill myself (we’re still covered under our old insurance). Imagine my surprise when he handed me the bill. It was €30.65 ($41.75). The whole bill, a private hospital, the E.R, the starter med. It was that little. I can’t even submit it to my insurance as my E.R copay is $150!!!! My visit to the E.R 2 years ago had cost $2900. I paid $150 and the insurance picked up the rest. Pretty insane the difference!!!

The round trip cab fare cost €16

The visit €30.65

The 2 medications €22.87 (both are brand names. I didn’t want to wait till the next day for them to order the generic on one)

All said, this whole episode cost a total of €69.52 ($94.53). Still cheaper than my copay.

I am loving this heavenly haven. Thanks, St. James Hospital.