Surgery was cancelled the day before due to insurance issues?

by Karla
(Elkridge, MD USA)

My son is 2 and has been diagnosed with chordee, hypospadia, and inguinal hernia. The day before the surgery I was told by the billing department at Johns Hopkins that since our insurance is not accepted there, they will have to cancel the surgery. They then referred me to another practice, but I am now told his surgery won't be until the end of March.

Meanwhile, my son is in intermittent pain and screams at the top of his lungs whenever I have to wash his genitalia. I am in the process of changing insurance just so I can get my son the surgery he needs, but I am hesitant because I feel I shouldn't have too since Johns Hopkins started his treatment, and I feel, they should honor that.

Is there a way to get JH to follow-through on the treatment? Can they just drop a patient in need off surgery like that without completing the treatment? Thank you.

Visitor Question:
Disclaimer: Information provided in our response is NOT formal legal advice. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Under no circumstances should the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site be relied upon when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Our response does NOT create an attorney-client relationship. Always get a formal case review from a licensed attorney in your area.

ANSWER for "Surgery was cancelled the day before due to insurance issues?":

Karla (Elkridge, MD USA):

Before bringing your son in to Johns Hopkins, you should have checked to be sure they take your insurance. The burden was upon you, and not the hospital. Johns Hopkins would only have been under a legal duty to stabilize your son if you had brought him there in an emergency situation.

While your son’s pain is regrettable, as long as he is stable it is up to you to find him appropriate medical care. From the facts you present, Johns Hopkins has no legal duty to continue treating him.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Judge Calisi

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